Procrastinating productively

Sravya Singampalli/File

RRR week is supposed to be an entire week dedicated to studying, but let’s be honest — most of us spend more time putting off our work than actually doing it. It’s inevitable that you’re going to indulge in some hardcore procrastination sometime this week, whether or not you actually need all seven days to study. Why not use that time to do the chores you wouldn’t think of touching otherwise? As the week comes to a close, here’s the Clog’s take on how to make the most of the time you waste. 

When’s the last time you saw the inside of the Recreational Sports Facility? Are your running shoes collecting dust? It sounds like you’ve been procrastinating on your exercise just as much as you’ve been procrastinating on your studies! RRR week is a great opportunity to go running, take a hike on the fire trails or have a dip in the pool at the Hearst Gym. Exercise can help you work off some of those study snacks and will definitely help you feel better than if you just sat at your desk for hours on end.

If your head is throbbing from staring at the same Google Doc for the last few days, then simply changing the picture on your computer screen can provide a welcome study break. If you want to try a different approach, take some time off from filling out all those study guides to clean out your inbox. Who knows how many emails from Dirks you have cluttering up your Gmail account? It’ll feel amazing to get rid of that promotional spam from IKEA that expired three months ago and to respond to all the starred emails you’ve been neglecting in the name of “studying.”

If you think cleaning up your email feels good, imagine how nice it would feel to clean your room, your house or even your bathroom (don’t worry, everyone procrastinates on that last one). Physically cleaning the space you’re living in provides a productive release of pent-up energy — and once you’re done, it’ll make studying in that space both easier and more comfortable. The only real drawback to it is that you’ll finally have to deal with that giant pile of laundry you move from your bed to the floor every night. 

Studying all day is definitely exhausting, but that doesn’t give you a reason to neglect caring for yourself! Put down the book for a second and take a hot shower, allow yourself a quick snooze or dress up in a cute outfit and take some killer selfies. Maintaining good hygiene and staying well-rested and positive is key to productive studying. It won’t kill you to take a quick self-care break. Your brain and body will thank you in the long run.

There’s no doubt that studying is very important, especially with finals right on the horizon. But it’s just as important to tend to the non-academic portions of your life — which means not anchoring yourself to a desk in Main Stacks and refusing to change clothes for three days. Finding balance is integral to your overall success, and though it may be difficult to do normally, and even more so during finals season, you owe it to yourself to make the effort. Good luck on finals, from all of us at the Clog! 

Contact Gillian Perry at [email protected].