September 6 is Fight Procrastination Day. It is an unofficial holiday that encourages people to take charge of their procrastination problems and to find ways to combat the never-ending urge to put off important tasks for another day.
Start up by reading this article in The Guardian. I keep leaving important work to the last minute.
- Group Discussion (10 minutes)
- Divide students into small groups and ask them to discuss the tasks that they are most likely to procrastinate on.
- Have each group share their findings with the class.
- Answer the questions below.
- Strategies for Overcoming Procrastination (20 minutes)
- Read list of strategies below
- Discuss each tip with the class and ask students to share their own strategies for combating procrastination.
- Activity (15 minutes)
- Set a timer for 15 minutes and ask students to work on a task that they have been procrastinating on.
- Conclusion (5 minutes)
- Ask students to share their experiences with the class.
- Remind them that by taking small steps today, they can start to overcome their procrastination habits and achieve their goals.
Tips for overcoming procrastination
- Get rid of catastrophizing. One of the biggest reasons people procrastinate is because they catastrophize, or make a huge deal out of something. It may be related to how tough, how boring, or how painful it will be to complete the task; whatever the case, the underlying theme is that doing the task will be “unbearable.” In reality, challenges, boredom, and hard work will not kill you—or even make you sick. Procrastination, on the other hand, is associated with stress—think of the stress you feel when you avoid making a phone call you know you need to make. So keep things in perspective: “Sure, this is not my favorite task, but I can get through it.”
- Focus on your “why.” Procrastinators focus more on short-term gains (avoiding the distress associated with the task), as opposed to long-term results (the stress of not doing it, as well as the consequences of avoiding this task). Instead, try focusing on why you are doing this task: What are the benefits of completing it?
- Break tasks into smaller steps. Large tasks can be overwhelming and lead to procrastination. Instead of trying to tackle everything at once, break tasks into smaller steps that are more manageable.
- Set deadlines for yourself. Deadlines can help motivate you to get things done. Set realistic deadlines for yourself and stick to them.
- Reward yourself for progress. Celebrate small successes along the way. This can help keep you motivated and focused.
- Avoid distractions. Turn off your phone or log out of social media when working on important tasks.
- Get organized and decluttered. A cluttered workspace can lead to procrastination and decreased productivity.
- Who created Fight Procrastination Day and when?
- What is the definition of procrastination according to the article?
- What is the main reason people procrastinate according to the article?
- What is one strategy for overcoming procrastination that involves breaking down large tasks?
- What is one strategy for overcoming procrastination that involves celebrating small successes?
- What is the name of the productivity expert who helps people get organized and declutter their homes?
- What is the term used to describe making a huge deal out of something that leads to procrastination?
- What is the name of the swimming coach who said: “you’re faster than the people who didn’t turn up”?
- What is the name of the mental health condition that can cause procrastination and should be treated by a professional?
- What is the name of the phenomenon that occurs when a superconductor levitates when placed on a magnet?
- Students will be assessed based on their participation in group discussions and activities.
- What are the causes and effects of procrastination? How can individuals overcome this habit?
- How does procrastination affect academic performance? What strategies can students use to overcome procrastination and improve their grades?
Further reading on the topic
Here are some reliable sources on the topic of procrastination:
- “What Research Has Been Conducted on Procrastination? Evidence From a Systematical Bibliometric Analysis” by Bo Yan and Xiaomin Zhang1.
- “5 Research-Based Strategies for Overcoming Procrastination” by Chris Bailey2.
- “Understanding procrastination: A case of a study skills course” by Jolanta Zaremba and Katarzyna Kowalczuk3.