Procrastination is the thief of time and a lot of students suffer from it. They can spend whole daysin the library doing nothing but staring into space, eating snacks, surfing the Internet, watchingvideos and looking at their pretty peers sitting around them, who, most likely, are doing nothingeither.
According to a recent report by the BBC, 95 percent of us procrastinate at some point and 20percent of the world’s population are chronic procrastinators, complicating their lives with theirincessant delaying of tasks.
The figures are dismal. Procrastinators are less wealthy, less healthy and less happy than thosewho don’t delay. Just look at Hamlet, who is perhaps the world’s most famous procrastinator. He isalso a university student, and his crippling indecision leads to tragedy on an epic scale.
Procrastinators like to find excuses to justify their behavior, but BBC columnist Rowan Pelling saysthey are all wrong.
Many procrastinators tell themselves they are perfectionists who work best under pressure. Pellingsays this is nonsense, as work done at the last minute is more likely to have mistakes than workdone on time.
She says the behavior of procrastinators often makes them feel flustered and ashamed,inconveniences others, and annoys loved ones.
Pelling also points out that procrastination feels particularly delinquent in a society that views swiftaction as commendable, and, at times, even as a moral good.
Fortunately, social scientists have thrown their weight behind efforts to understand this behavioralflaw and offer strategies to control it.
Piers Steel, a Canadian social scientist and author of The Procrastination Equation, believeshumankind is “designed” to procrastinate. Nevertheless, he suggests a couple of good ways to getthrough the task at hand.