Student to Student
March 8, 2006
I must confess, at times I can be a procrastinator. Sometimes I find myself staying up late Sunday night to type my Student to Student column which is due Monday at noon. It is sad to admit that it is a task I have the two whole previous weeks to work on.
Between track practice, dance rehearsal, hot-tubbing, skiing, homework, ice-skating, movie-watching, working a part-time job, filming a Spanish class project, and eating m&ms, I had a lot keeping me busy after school last week so this weekend and I didn’t get around to my column until Sunday.
Usually I can remedy this situation by staying up late and sending in my writing by e-mail by 1 a.m. and it all works out.
The only problem is that "usually" is not the same as "always."
This week, for example, my planned topic for my column fell through when I was unable to contact my interviewee in the small amount of time that I had left to complete the column.
With so much to do all the time, many of us end up pushing our necessary tasks back in favor of easier or more urgent tasks, leaving some important things to do as late as possible in an attempt to cram into our lives everything we want to do and have to do.
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Thus, procrastination begins with simply putting off a task, and finishes in either panic about getting it done in time or giving up on the task completely.
Fortunately for many procrastinators the panic produced by prolonging the task can create a sense of urgency which helps to complete the job. This urgency encourages the mind to search and find the solutions to the issue at hand. There are even those who justify their procrastination by claiming that they work well under pressure and that they need to wait until the last minute to begin a project in order to achieve the inspiring rush to get it done.
I am not one of those people, but I do know that I have not yet discovered a way to go back and un-spend time that has already been spent.
Perhaps, the best solution to this problem is to make the best out of the situation and resolve to act differently in the future.
Sean Covey, author of "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens," suggests getting the big tasks done first and then filling in the space around them with the smaller tasks. Like packing a suitcase, it is much easier to tuck small things in around the edges than to try to fit the big things in on top of the socks and underwear.
But in my case, this time, even though my original idea did not run as I had planned, all was not lost. I decided to convert my seeming dilemma into the new column topic of procrastination.
The moral of the story: we can get away with procrastination sometimes, but it’s no fun when we can’t. So, when all else fails, get to work, improvise, and learn a lesson for the future. What do you think? Students, The Park Record has its own blog for students to shout out how they feel about "Student to Student" or any other topic. Join the cyber-realm today at prstudentblog.blogspot.com.