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Procrastination€refers to the counterproductive deferment of actions or tasks to

a later time.€Psychologists€often cite such€behavior€as a mechanism for coping


with the€anxiety€associated with starting or completing any task or decision.€Th
ere are three criteria for a behavior to be classified as procrastination: it mu
st be counterproductive, needless, and delaying.
Procrastination may result in€stress, a sense of€guilt€and€crisis, severe loss o
f personal€productivity, as well as societal disapproval for not meeting respons
ibilities or commitments. These feelings combined may promote further procrastin
ation. While it is regarded as€normal€for people to procrastinate to some degree
, it becomes a problem when it impedes normal functioning.
Causes of procrastination
Psychological
The psychological causes of procrastination vary greatly, but generally surround
issues of anxiety, low sense of€self-worth, and a€self-defeating mentality]. Pr
ocrastinators are also thought to have a lower-than-normal level of€conscientiou
sness, more based on the "dreams and wishes" of perfection or achievement in con
trast to a realistic appreciation of their obligations and potential.
Physiological
Research on the€physiological€roots of procrastination mostly surrounds the role
of the€prefrontal cortex. This area of the brain is responsible for executive b
rain functions such as planning,€impulse control, attention, and acts as a filte
r by decreasing distracting stimuli from other brain regions. Damage or low acti
vation in this area can reduce an individual's ability to filter out distracting
stimuli, ultimately resulting in poorer organization, a loss of attention and i
ncreased procrastination. This is similar to the prefrontal lobe's role in atten
tion-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), where underactivation is common.
College students are also victims of Procrastination. Whether its submission of
assignment or working on the all important test or finishing up on the presentat
ion which is due. Perhaps procrastination is one of the biggest hurdles in many
students achieving their true potential.
Statements like:-
The assignment is due next week. So I have plenty of time. I’ll start doing it n
ext week.
I don’t have enough time to complete the work as I am busy with other important
work.
I don’t feel like doing the assignment. I feel its too stupid and boring.
I tried doing it but just couldn’t understand the where to start.
I will just copy it from someone.
Well these above statements range from near truth to downright obscure to even i
rresponsible.
What students perhaps don’t understand is that they are making up reasons to hid
e their procrastinating habits.
This particular type of Procrastination is known as Student syndrome. It refers
to the phenomenon where a student will only begin to fully apply themselves to
a task immediately before a deadline. This negates the usefulness of any buffers
built into individual task€duration€estimates. Students have also difficulties
when self-imposing deadlines.
Well the first and perhaps the most important aspect of procrastination is that
many students do not understand or fail to realize that they are a victim of it.
Many take refuge under sheer denial. So the first step is to accept the fact th
at everyone does procrastinate. It is only on the acceptance of the problems wil
l a person seek solutions.
Students have to made aware of the ill effects of falling into this trap of Proc
rastination.
Five bad effects of procrastination:
1. A feeling that a job has been left undone is bad for our morale
2. Unfinished jobs leave a lot of clutter around which affects our efficiency.
3. Putting things off means accumulating jobs and urgency could crop up on the s
ame day.
4. Procrastination when it comes to the notice of other people maybe branded as
laziness and lack of interest in the job.
5. The job becomes more unpleasant the more you postpone it.
Methods to overcome Procrastination
The college must provide all the students a big calendar which has space to writ
e down the dates when the assignments are due. Students will have a visual remin
der to complete their work on time.
Then decide what your most productive work/study times are. Do you tend to work
better late at night? Early in the morning? Friday mornings from 6 to 10 am? Cho
ose one or two days in which you will use to work on your assignment. In other w
ords, make an appointment with yourself
In the begening students must take up only 1 single activity or a specific part
from the whole. This will likely increase their motivation for completing the as
signment as they will feel that doing one specific part is manageable instead of
the entire lot.
Many people believe that since they have sat down for work which will probably t
ake up lot of time they can start up by indulging in some leisure activities lik
e reading a novel, playing games, chatting etc. it is advisable that students ge
t straight down to work as soon as possible to avoid unnecessary waste of precio
us time.
The deadline for submission of work must be strictly adhered to by the college.
The college can use the carrot and stick method to ensure strict follow up of th
e time lines.
The topic and its discussion must be dealt in detail. Students must be made awar
e of their problems. A professor must be assigned the job of helping the student
s to overcome this problem by suggesting various methods. Follow ups should be d
one on a regular basis.
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