As a college student myself, I am all too familiar with the very popular method of procrastinating, but I highly recommend that everyone avoids doing this. One of the most popular things that students procrastinate with is writing research papers. Often times students end up wasting their time relaxing or playing video games, watching TV, or surfing the web instead of starting their research paper. Well, throughout my time in college so far, I’ve discovered how difficult it can be to start a research paper, but I’ve come up with some great ways to get yourself started fairly easily.
1) Go to the Library – This is the best way to get your research paper started. At the library pick out a cubby or work desk with no one else near you to help avoid being distracted at all costs. At my University, there are multiple libraries which are huge, so there’s always going to be a place where you can go where there will be no one else around. Try to find one of the quietest areas possible, and avoid group study areas or areas where there is noise as much as possible, as this will only hurt your performance on the paper.
2) Cut Out Distractions – Close all your internet windows of Facebook, your e-mail, or anything else that may be distracting you from writing your paper. Close out AOL instant messenger as well, because you certainly shouldn’t be talking to people while you’re focusing on your research paper. I see people do this all too often, and they almost always (if not always) get a lower grade on the paper than those students who avoid distractions such as this while writing a paper.
3) Write Yourself Notes and To-Do Lists – I keep a list of things I have to get done on my desk, which is a constant reminder of things I have to do. The feeling of crossing things off that list is great, so often times I find myself working hard to get everything on that list done, so that I can enjoy myself and not have to worry about that. Although it may be annoying getting everything done at once, or at pieces at a time, the feeling of having everything done is great. If you write the paper on the note, it will constantly remind you that you have to do it, and eventually you’ll just want to give in so you can cross it off the list, even if it does mean getting everything else done on the list first.
4) Avoid Friends – Don’t try to write papers with friends. This will only hurt your paper, as you probably won’t focus the same with them there, and you may even get in trouble if the teacher things you two are copying off of each other. If you want to show each other your papers after you are both done, that should be alright for editorial reasons, but you shouldn’t work together with a roommate or a friend on a paper.
5) Have Self Control – Put your cell phone away, get rid of everything else, and just sit down and get it down. Having self discipline is a virtue that is hard to find these days, but if you can do it, you will be putting yourself in great shape for the paper, and for the rest of your life in everything you do.
Overall, avoiding procrastinating writing a paper can be tough, but I find it easiest if you use some of the tips listed above. They will really help you out both in college, or with anything in life that you’re procrastinating.