If you’re anything like me, you’re probably procrastinating right now.
Procrastination is the real deal in college. It can suck up hours of what should be homework time, cause you to rethink all of your previous life choices, and maybe even force you to make some new ones. Nevertheless, it’s important to recognize the symptoms of procrastination early.
However, I myself am a hypocrite, as I did not think of this article’s topic until I was 34 tabs deep in Buzzfeed quizzes.
If you don’t know what Buzzfeed is, GOOD FOR YOU. RUN WHILE YOU STILL CAN.
If you do know what Buzzfeed is, well, you’re probably reading this article in the hopes that I’ll have something encouraging to say. I don’t.
For those of you who are brave enough to admit to yourselves and the world that you don’t know what Buzzfeed is, I’ll briefly describe it for you: Buzzfeed is a news and media website, where you can read up on the lives of things going on around the country and world politically, socially— you name it. While they tend to focus more on the entertainment side of things, Buzzfeed has earned a reputation from college students as being the biggest supporter of procrastination.
When I say support, I mean, “The thing that allows me to go 34 tabs deep into quizzes about myself and completely forget that I have a paper due in 21 minutes.”
Yeah. It’s a bit of a problem.
But acknowledging you have a problem is the first step to overcoming it, right?
There are five steps to a full-fledged Buzzfeed quiz addiction. I’m not suggesting you go and throw yourself into the world of Buzzfeed, but this may help you recognize the signs of addiction early, and you may be able to save your grades.
Step One: You spend more than 30 minutes a day on it.
When I was first starting out, I didn’t really think much of Buzzfeed quizzes. To me, they were just time killers, and before college, I was all about being super successful and getting straight A's. Now, in college, I’m still focused on being super successful and making straight A's, but college is hard, and my brain is a lot more distracted now than it was back when I was in high school. I have a lot of other things to do, I have to be responsible for my own life now (which is probably half the reason I procrastinate), and I don’t have time to just putt around. So, when everything gets to be a bit too much, I binge on Buzzfeed and take quizzes that give me a superficial sense of accomplishment and grades that won’t show up on an official transcript.
“How should I solve this problem?” you might ask. It’s easy. Set an alarm. Even better, make the alarm’s sound be the same sound that wakes you up in the morning. There’s some psychological term that goes along with this, but even though I should remember it (sorry, Dr. K), I definitely don’t. According to science, if you associate one thing (Buzzfeed) with something else you hate (the sound of the alarm that wakes you up in the morning), you will grow to hate it, too.
Step Two: You downloaded the app.
As much as I like technology, I’m a bit of a luddite when it comes to my phone. I really see my phone’s usefulness in terms of who it can call for me, what it can look up, and where it can take me. I don’t like having a lot of photos, details, or apps on my phone, although having music to listen to while traveling is just fine. Everything else just clogs it up, and I like knowing I can download the entirety of One Direction’s music without having to worry about space.
Besides, if you have to pay for more space, it’s just not worth it.
But I knew there was something wrong with me when one day, I thought, “Hmm… I’m going to download the Buzzfeed app for easier access in case I get bored,” and I did. Boy. I was desperate. I must’ve used that app a million times a day.
I found that when I download an app like to my phone, I’m more likely to use it. That’s why I don’t have Facebook on my phone—I really don’t need another reason to spend more time on Facebook.
SO GET RID OF THE APP. You don’t need that. If you really want to break yourself of procrastination, just leave the bare essentials on your phone. A little boredom never killed anybody, as far as I know.
Step Three: You start spreading the word.
I got my friend addicted to Buzzfeed one weekend when we were both bored, and like the Black Plague, it spread. Soon, we were having inside jokes about which dog we were, or which celebrity we’d marry. Our other friends ended up having to tell us to stop talking about Buzzfeed, not because they weren’t included in the conversation, but because it was rapidly taking over our lives.
So STOP TALKING ABOUT BUZZFEED. Seriously. It’s the new B-word. Don’t mention it, and hopefully that old adage will become true: Out of sight, out of mind.
Step Four: You realize what you’re doing.
This one’s always the worst. You realize how deep you’re in when it’s suddenly 3am on a school night, and you’ve taken at least 50 quizzes since attempting to start your homework. You might look a bit like Penny in the Big Bang Theory after she’s just spent so many hours on her computer.
The best way is to step back, delete everything Buzzfeed-related, and maybe block it, too. Then, get back down to business and let other things consume your brain once again. If you need a break, try going on CNN. Hopefully you’ll be so disgusted with the world that you’ll want to get back to what you’re doing so that you won’t have to look at more photos of Donald Trump’s tangerine face.
Step Five: You repeat the cycle.
And here, dear friends, is the pitfall. You may be able to follow the aforementioned steps, but let’s be honest. You cannot escape Buzzfeed. It’s worse than Big Brother. Just accept your addiction, and move on.
And in the meantime, maybe you can get your professor hooked on those quizzes, and maybe they’ll just forget to enter in your grades. ;)