Lesson 2.2: Procrastination

Post-it note that says "do it now!"
“Do it now” by Maklay62 is in the Public Domain, CC0

Before entering into some solutions, common and creative, to help you solve what is arguably the number one detriment to effective learning at school, home, and/or on the job (aka procrastination), complete Exercise 2.1, below.

This personal inventory is a bit different from others you may have taken. It incorporates very little about the usual bad habit suspects when it comes to the “P” word and includes more on the other reasons for such a habit, as suggested in the previous lesson as well as one or two other procrastination-inducers which have cropped up in our now social-media-saturated lives. Perhaps there is, in fact, more to your challenges with procrastination than the assumptions about laziness, disorganization, etc. See what you think. More importantly, see what you can do about it.
UNIT 2, EXERCISE 2.1
For each item, circle one. Oh, and by the way, feel free to add any comments you wish. Sometimes quick-answer exercises like this just don’t have enough of YOUR personal response options, but try not to overthink things. This is, after all, a simple snapshot of where your beliefs and feelings are at this moment in time.
1. I admit it. Just like everyone else, I feel that I am lazy when it comes to getting my assignments and/or work done.
  • usually
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

2. I am disorganized when it comes to getting my assignments and/or work done.

  • usually
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

3. I get confused about what I am supposed to do for the assignment or task.

  • usually
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

4. I have a hard time saying “no” to others which puts me behind in my work/studies.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

5. I have this sinking feeling that I will succumb to the usual reasons for procrastinating, no matter what they are.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

6. I just don’t think I have the organizational abilities to be able to stop at least some of my procrastinating.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

7. When I was in high school it wasn’t a problem studying for most tests the night before.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

8. I work best under pressure, so I think that procrastinating is really good for me.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

9. When what I have to study or accomplish is just not that important to me, I find it more tempting to procrastinate.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

10. I have a hard time talking myself into maintaining a better attitude about not procrastinating.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

11. I think I have more time to finish something than I usually do.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

12. It annoys me that some instructors assign so much homework when I have a life outside of school, too! So, I believe that it can be their fault that I have to procrastinate on certain things.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

13. I am very social and spending time with  my friends sometimes gets in the way of doing my work.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

14. I can’t seem to stay away from social media.

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never

15. Here is something (or perhaps more than one) not on this list that also causes me to procrastinate. (Possible issues might include a disability or some kind of learning challenge, homelessness or some other kind of living situation challenge, pregnancy, work hours and responsibilities, and/or personal life stress.)

_______________________________________________________________

  • most of the time
  • sometimes
  • rarely
  • never
 NOTE: This exercise is not graded on responses. The answer key to this personal inventory is to get right into helping the learner start solving some of these causes of procrastination.

As promised above, let’s get started with some immediate solutions as well as some perspectives that might, in time, help you adjust your thoughts and feelings or perhaps a flagging sense of self efficacy and/or other reasons you might commit the “P” word.

UNIT 2, EXERCISE 2.2

We are fortunate at Lane to have a library of Study Tips written by Lane Instructor Dan Hodges and continually in use to enhance our Effective Learning classes. Below are two articles (study tips 10 and 15) he has written that will help you begin to glean some solutions to your procrastination challenges, whether they stem from your beliefs, feelings, and thoughts, or whether they stem from some of the more specific issues in the survey you just completed.

Instructions:

  1. From your responses to exercise 2.1, select your top five challenges when it comes to procrastinating. Create a chart, such as this, but leave yourself ample space to fill in solutions you find:
    CHALLENGE SOLUTION
    1

    2

    3

    4

    5

2. Keeping in mind your top 5 picks, as you read through the following articles, insert what information strikes you as being most helpful. The Tips are chock full of information, so allot yourself an hour or two to read them and annotate for ideas. That said, of course, don’t stop there! You will likely pick up several more solutions you hadn’t thought of before.

Also, note: future lessons on reading comprehension, organization of time and materials, etc., will also help you with solutions, so this can be an ongoing treasure hunt for you as you conquer one of a learner’s worst enemies…you know…the “P” word…

Study Tip # 10–How to Create A Positive Attitude and Stop Procrastinating–this article is now linked on a PDF that includes all of the articles. You will have to scroll down.

Study Tip # 15–What Most Instructors Expect Their Students to Do–this article is also now on a PDF file that includes all of the articles.

 

 UNIT 2, EXERCISE 2.3

There is a new phenomenon called “social media addiction”. I’m sure I don’t need to elaborate. I, myself, succumb from time to time. However, for more specifics, perspectives, and assistance in conquering this particular cause of procrastination, download the article and annotate it for information you think might help you. Write a short summary (5-7 sentences).

Social media addiction is a bigger problem than you think

 

License

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Lesson 2.2: Procrastination by Phyllis Nissila is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.