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LocoLuke's avatar

What strategies did you use in school to keep from procrastinating / letting work pile up?

Asked by LocoLuke (1126points) December 15th, 2009

I’m getting a bit overwhelmed with schoolwork this last week before vacation, so I’m starting to see just how bad my current study habits are. What do you guys do when you’ve got a lot of work to do, and it doesn’t seem like you have enough time to finish it all?

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18 Answers

styfle's avatar

I go on and then do my work ten seconds before its due. It works pretty well.

sliceswiththings's avatar

Hello, it’s 3:49 AM and I have yet to start my huuuge paper due tomorrow. I’m armed with a Monster so hopefully something will work out.

sliceswiththings's avatar

By the way, I’m a senior in college and I never improved my procrastination habits. Hopefully you’ll nip it in the bud!

Thammuz's avatar

I’m in university at the moment and no, i’m not saying i’m studying there, i AM in class right now. And i’m not really following what the teacher is saying if i’m writing here, am i?

sliceswiththings's avatar

@Thammuz Get off Fluther! That is disrespectful to the professor to play on the internet during a lecture in my humble opinion. At least pull out your notebook and doodle or make a shopping list so it looks like you’re paying attention.

rangerr's avatar

Yeah, I’m horrible with procrastination. Like @sliceswiththings I’m running on an energy drink because of a paper I haven’t started.

Finny's avatar

I actually tried to not procrastinate?

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I was in the habit of automatically dealing with whatever was assigned immediately. A term paper would be done within two days of it being assigned. I couldn’t bear the thought of something left undone and could not relax until it was done. The consequence of this was in the last week of the term everybody else was going nuts finishing papers or cramming for exams and I’m goofing off. Having no social life whatsoever was also helpful, no distractions. Autism has its benefits sometimes, rarely.

YARNLADY's avatar

I think the only way to deal with procrastination is never to let it in your life. When you get an assignment, start working on it immediately, even in class, if possible. Go directly to work after class, and perhaps while you eat your lunch or dinner. Do not allow yourself to do anything else, until your work is done. This is an excellent time to practice the work habits that will be valuable in your career choice.

thriftymaid's avatar

I love school. I always did assignments when I got home from class. I always did the readings before class (except in law school—there was more required reading that you could do sometimes). My basic strategy was to always be prepared for class. Did I find shortcuts and buy notes—youbetcha.

King_of_Sexytown's avatar

I just procratinated. Didn’t have any strategies for that.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I didn’t do some of the work as perfecly as necessary – it was still good enough…set priorities…

rangerr's avatar

@YARNLADY ..because just not doing it is always possible. Did you GO to college?

I get distracted super easy. I was working on my paper last night when I realized I never let some of the horses out, so I ended up chillin’ in the fields for a few hours. Now I’ve got class in less than an hour. Yeah, I’m on Fluther. So what? I need to wake up somehow.
Do I regret it? No. I know I’m not the only one who isn’t going to be prepared, and I put my horses before school.

Zen_Again's avatar

I always wanted a good strategy for procrastination when I was in school – but I kept putting it off.

Soubresaut's avatar

Especially near a break, it helps me to think about what I’ll be doing just a few days from the grueling one… I just have to push through a little more, and then freedom! I dunno, it helps me stay motivated when I can see an endpoint…
Make yourself some hot chocolate/tea, and dive into the work without thinking too hard—about the time, about all that you have to do—just don’t try to do your absolute best, do as good as you can to get everything done and still sleep… Refuse to let yourself do anything else until the work is done. “When I finish I can do ______________” so you have a motivation to work for!

Jeruba's avatar

I didn’t learn this in school. I was a terrible procrastinator and wrote a lot of crash papers at the eleventh hour. As an English major with bookshelves groaning under the semester’s reading matter, I often had to write the papers on books I hadn’t read. Before the Internet, there was an art to that. I aced ‘em, too, and never cheated. Now, there’s a skill you can use in life. But I did sweat and suffer a lot, and I did not enjoy the misery I put myself through.

In those days, too, papers were typewritten, and this was even before Liquid Paper, never mind word processors. If you messed up a page, you had to retype it.

But about procrastination: I had to learn this lesson in the workplace. It didn’t take me long to understand that I didn’t enjoy either kind of pain: the pain of missing my deadlines or the pain of making them at the last minute. So I chose instead to avoid the pain.

In my profession (editing) I usually had big deliverables over weeks or months, and so it was a lot like handling the coursework for a semester.

I became extremely good at estimating how long a particular task would take. I knew when things were at a level where I could just go along and take tasks one by one and when there’d be a crunch and I’d have to juggle. That’s when I would lay out the hours needed for each job on a grid, working around meetings and major interruptions, allowing for some slack, and figure out exactly where I had to be on each one at the end of each day in order to make it. I’d know right away if I was falling behind. And I’d put in the extra time to get ahead before the last minute.

For me the key was keeping records that told me how long things did take so I could make good estimates of how long similar things would take.

I wish I had been that smart in school.

Thammuz's avatar

@sliceswiththings Like he’s gonna notice, we’re 140 people in this class alone, he deosn’t even know our names! Besides who says i’m not taking notes on my laptop? Practically everyone does it here…

scotsbloke's avatar

it’s been a wee while since I was at school but I do remember playing gin-rummy in the back of the class with my pal.
Go tthe belt for it more than once too! lol

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