Everyone knows the problem. You put off a task that you know has to be done. You don’t start studying yet, even though you’d planned to, or you keep looking through Facebook instead of writing your thesis. This is what we call procrastination.
Although we all procrastinate to some extent in a relatively harmless way, procrastination can take on a more serious form that delays your studies. In that case, it’s important to do something about it. This may apply to you too. Do the situations below sound familiar to you?
You have to learn for exams, but you don’t get down to it. Maybe you’ve made timetables for yourself, but could never keep to them. You do know you should be studying, but you hope you can still make up for lost time. In the end, it’s always touch and go whether you’ll pass that exam.
You still have a lot of assignments to do, but you can’t see the wood for the trees any more. And you don’t really know what’s expected of you, how exactly you should start on the assignment or which assignment you should begin with. This means your mind is constantly occupied with your studies, but nothing happens in practice. You do feel guilty about it. You might even lie awake at night thinking about it or you might avoid your teachers.
You’re working on your thesis, but can’t come up with good arguments and sub-arguments or a workable theoretical framework. If you have to work in the library or at home, you give up quickly. Actually, you need someone to set you deadlines and tell you whether you’re on the right path, so that you don’t feel like you’re facing it alone. Without that extra push, you find it hard to take the plunge.
This is what you can do
The first step towards studying efficiently is to determine what your attitude is with regard to your studies. Some people identify with more than one attitude. For instance, they find a statistics assignment so difficult that they don’t hand it in (and are therefore a ‘tense procrastinator’), but they put off another assignment because they think they can get away with it (a ‘relaxed procrastinator’).
Come along for a first study day
Now you’ve identified the problem, you can you need extra help to get your procrastination under control. Our study days help you to make your timetables and adjust them. We also give you insight into the reasons why you are putting off assignments and getting behind in your studies, so that in future you can recognise the sticking points yourself and get back on track sooner. We do this in various ways:
Minimising distractions: We ensure there are no distractions from things that usually disturb your concentration, such as social media or your phone. Or maybe it’s your own mind that’s the distraction. That’s also something we can talk about.
Creating an overview of your material: We ensure that you’re absolutely clear about what you should be doing right now. This allows you to work with a specific focus and do one thing at a time. By keeping to a reliable study timetable, you learn to trust yourself to be able to do the rest of your tasks at another time as well.
Improving your study rhythm: Do you study at set times? When do you study best? This is also something we look at. We take account of what works best for you, because everyone’s different.
Taking a critical look at your weekly schedule: How come you never get down to your studies? Do other things get in the way? What takes priority? What can be planned better to give you more time for your studies – and for relaxation?