The 6 Stages Of Procrastination

The 6 Stages Of Procrastination

The life of a college student is constantly filled with demands, and sometimes it's hard to know where to start.
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We've all had those weeks when it feels like teachers have gotten together and made plans to make our lives as difficult as they possibly can. Whether we want to or not, we've all been guilty of procrastinating and waiting until the last minute to start working. We know all too well the steps we take to avoid the assignments we're given.

1. Optimism

Break out the colorful pens! It's time to make a detailed list of every assignment, quiz, test and event happening during the week. This is the go-to coping mechanism for when you're completely overwhelmed with everything being thrown at you. These lists give the illusion that you have your life together and help you to postpone the panic that happens as the deadlines start to creep up on you.

2. Distracting yourself with productive tasks

I am definitely guilty of procrastinating so hard that I loop back around to being productive. The busiest weeks are always when the most cleaning, organizing of my room and deleting of old junk-emails happen. I tell myself that, once my living space is clean and all my clothes are washed, I will be free to focus on the work that needs to be done. It seems like the perfect plan, right?

3. Flat-out avoidance

This is where Netflix comes into it. After all that hard work of cleaning and organizing, a break is well-deserved. The deadlines are still far enough away that I don't feel like I actually need to start working. I always tell myself that after a good TV binge and some time spent laying in bed, I will get up and dedicate myself to the work that needs to be done. I cannot tell you the number of times that I've made the promise of just watching one more episode. After a while though, I actually do force myself to stop.

4. Let's get down to business


Alright—it's time to get some caffeine, claim a spot at the library (even though I spent forever cleaning my room) and start on all this work. This is usually where I am on Thursdays since I only have two classes to go to. The environment is crucial for me during this stage. All of the color-coded planning I did at the start of the week actually comes in handy as well and helps to keep me from getting distracted between tasks. For a while, it seems like I might actually be able to pull this off.

5. Panic


It's getting later and later, and my brain is starting to lose its ability to concentrate on written words in a text book or the computer screen. The caffeine is wearing off, yet there are still chapters left to be studied and conclusion paragraphs that haven't been written. As I keep getting more and more stressed, my focus continues to drift away from the assignments that need to be done. All this stress makes me want to regress to the stage of flat-out avoidance, but the perfectionist in me won't let this happen. As much as I try to deny it, there are still quite a few hours of work ahead.

6. Never again

Time to take a breath. Somehow I managed to get all my work done. However, the relief cannot be enjoyed because I have to force myself to get up and go class. On the way, while drinking yet another cup of coffee, I make a vow to never ever do this to myself again. I go over the events of the past few days in my mind, picking apart all the times that I could have been being productive and adding hours on to my night's sleep. I do not always keep this promise to myself, but occasionally it does work and I do better at prioritizing the next time that I get bombarded with school work.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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To All Incoming Freshmen, When You Get To College, Please Don't Be THAT Freshman

I am pretty sure we all know who I'm talking about.

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As we are all counting down the days to return to campus, students are looking forward to meeting new people and reuniting with old friends. And then, there is the freshman.

We have all been there. The eagerness and excitement have been slowly building up through months of summer vacation, all waiting for this moment. I understand the anxiousness, enthusiasm, and insecurities. The opportunity to meet new people and explore a new area is very intriguing. But let's be real, you are here to make memories and get an education. So here are a few pieces of advice from a former college freshman.

1. Don't be that freshman who follows their significant other to college

This is the boy or girl who simply can not think for themselves. The 17-year-old puts their own personal goals and interests aside to sacrifice for a six-month high school relationship. This will more than likely end at an end of semester transfer after the relationship has been tested for a month or two in college life. So if you want to really enjoy your freshman year, make your own decisions and do what is best for you.

2. Don't be that freshman who lets their parents pick their major

"You are not going to school just to waste my money."

This is a statement you might have heard from your parents. As true as it might seem, this is definitely not a good way to start your college years. If you are not majoring in something you can see yourself doing, you are wasting your time. You can major in biology, go to medical school, and make the best grades. But if deep down you don't want to be a doctor, you will NOT end up being a good doctor. When it comes to picking your major, you really have to follow your heart.

3. Don't be that freshman who gets overwhelmed with the first taste of freedom

Yes. It is all very exciting. You don't have a curfew, you don't have rules, you don't have anyone constantly nagging you, but let's not get carried away. Don't be the freshman who gets a tattoo on the first night of living on your own. Don't be the freshman who tries to drink every liquor behind the bar. Don't be the freshman who gets caught up being someone that they aren't. My best advice would be to take things slow.

4. Don't be that freshman who starts school isolated in a relationship

I'm not telling you not to date anyone during your freshman year. I am saying to not cut yourself off from the rest of the world while you date someone. Your first year on campus is such an amazing opportunity to meet people, but people are constantly eager to start dating someone and then only spend time with that person.

Be the freshman who can manage time between friends and relationships.

5. Don't be that freshman who can't handle things on their own

It is your first year on your own. Yes, you still need help from your parents. But at this point, they should not be ordering your textbooks or buying your parking pass. If you need something for a club or for class, YOU should handle it. If you're having roommate problems, YOU should handle it, not your parents. This is the real world and college is a great time for you to start building up to be the person you want to be in the future, but you can't successfully do that if your parents still deal with every minor inconvenience for you.

6. Don't be that freshman who only talks to their high school friends

I know your high school was probably amazing, and you probably had the coolest people go there. However, I believe that college is a great time to be on your own and experience new things. Meeting new people and going to new places will allow you to grow into a more mature person. There is a way to balance meeting new friends and maintaining friendships with childhood friends, and I am sure you will find that balance.

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Confessions Of An Out Of State College Student

There is nothing wrong with calling your mom every day.

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"I can't wait to get out of this state."

These were the words of an over-excited high school senior who swore she'd go far away for college and never look back. After having already received my acceptance letters to college, I began to create some pros and cons lists about each school. The first one off my list was the only in-state school to which I applied. After a while, I had it narrowed down to whether I wanted to be 11 hours away from home or 17. Fast forward to a year later when I realized being a lonely out-of-state Buckeye 11 hours away may have been the best decision I've ever made but also has some disadvantages.

1. I missed my parents.

At first, it may seem like getting away from your parents will be the best thing in the entire world. No rules, no helicoptering, and independence seemed like a breath of fresh air at first. However, there was a reality check when I realized that I was still a teenager and needed my parents. I missed coming home after school and having them ask about my day. I missed having my mom right there to hug me when times got tough and my dad talking to me about the Red Sox. I regretted taking for granted having them close and as a result, I called them every single day.

2. There are no places to get good cheese fries in Columbus.

This is self-explanatory. Do better, Columbus.

3. My hometown really isn't that boring.

As much as I complained while in high school about there being nothing to do, I missed what little there was to do while in college. Living on an island loses its charm after a while but once I was gone, I dreamed about being on the beach again. Of course, now that I'm home for summer it seems boring again. I just learned to appreciate it while I have it.

4. I got upset that I couldn't see my regular doctor and dentist.

As crazy as it seems, a real gush of homesickness took over me when people on my floor were going home on the weekends for doctor and dentist appointments. I would do anything to hear my dentist question my flossing abilities again, but the 11-hour car ride just wasn't a possibility. This also goes hand in hand with missing my parents. Making appointments for yourself is not a fun aspect of adulting. Not to mention, making an appointment at the student health center is an absolute pain in the ass.

5. I hate that all of the friends I made are in-staters.

As my Instagram feed flooded with photos of my college friends reuniting in Ohio, major FOMO hit. It's easy for everyone else to make a last minute weekend road trip to friends in different parts of the state...except me. If I was going back to Ohio, I would need a significant heads up and copious amounts of coffee to get me through the long drive. There is a silver lining, however. Reuniting with people from college really is that much more special when you haven't seen them in months.

6. THEY ARE CALLED SNEAKERS.

It makes my ears bleed to hear people refer to sneakers as "tennis shoes," and soda as "pop." Where the heck are these people shopping that label the sneaker section with "Tennis Shoes?" I'm sorry, but no, you're wrong.

7. Therapy dogs are nowhere near as cute as my dog.

Finals season rolls around, and the one thing I was looking forward to was the emotional support dogs. Instead of calming my nerves for upcoming exams, they made me miss my Frito-smelling, bed-hogging, underwear-chewing pooch. It also doesn't help that my dog has an irrational fear of being on Facetime and refused to look at the camera every time I would attempt to talk to him.

8. No, I don't know what you're talking about.

It seems that everyone in Ohio knows about every little town, restaurant and road in the entire state. Don't give me a "poor you" face when you find out I've never had Skyline Chili or Graeter's Ice Cream. I don't even know where Columbus is located in the state let alone any of the suburbs located outside of Cleveland.

9. I don't have a southern accent.

I grew up in Pennsylvania. Just because I'm from South Carolina and occasionally use the word "Y'all" does not mean I have a southern accent.

10. I have no idea how to get an absentee ballot.

College is a popular time for people to figure out their beliefs individually from their parents. With new experiences and people, it came naturally to develop political ideas and start taking stances on certain controversial topics. When the time comes to exercise my suffrage that many people fought for me to have, I have absolutely no idea how to vote out-of-state. Whoops.

11. Yes, the weather sucks.

As I look down at my four pairs of socks tucked into my long underwear, I reminisce on the days of sunshine and gross humidity. When you live down south, your blood certainly thins, and cold weather is nearly unbearable. I had to buy a winter coat before college because I didn't own one. That should've been a red flag right there.

12. Going to school out-of-state is the best decision I've ever made.

With every complaint, there are a million more lovely things about going to college far away. I have made so many lifelong friends from all over the country that I wouldn't have if I stayed close to my routes. As much as I miss my parents, my dentist, the local restaurants and of course my dog, I could not ask for a better college experience. Being surrounded by Tigers, Cougars, and Gamecocks at home may be overwhelming sometimes, but I could not be more proud to be a Buckeye.

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