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How To BEAT Procrastination

Procrastination is the opposite of discipline! So to beat procrastination you will need to develop more discipline. Google defines discipline in the following way: “the practice of training people to obey rules or a code of behavior, using punishment to correct disobedience.”  That is not a correct definition. 

Discipline is a lot more positive experience, and it doesn’t need to only come from pain (I’ll replace the misguiding word ‘punishment’ with pain).  If you are too lazy to do your homework that has little to do with you and more to do with what you notice about doing your homework. If you notice more positive things about it, then you will follow through on your academic goals every day. If you notice more negative things, then you will procrastinate. Willpower can only help you so much. What you need is more discipline! Here are 3 simple steps you can take to develop more discipline.  

Step 1: Awareness  Grab a pen and paper!  On top of the paper, write down “doing homework” as a title. Then below that write all the reasons you hate doing your homework. Example: “It’s too boring," “it takes too much of my time/energy," “I want to do something else." Be specific!  Now that you are aware of what you hate about doing your homework, tear that paper to pieces!  

Step 2: Change  Grab another piece of paper,  again put down “doing homework” as a title. This time write at least ten reasons you want to do your homework. Specifically, write five positive things that doing homework will bring you and five negative things that will happen if you don’t do the homework. Example: “When I complete my homework I will have time for fun," or “my mom will buy me a dessert I will enjoy” (positive). “If I don’t do my homework,  I will feel guilty about procrastinating” (negative), “I will feel uncomfortable about not being ready during the class” (negative). 

 Step 3: Reinforce  Save the second sheet of paper and put it somewhere near your desk where you can see it every day. Remind yourself of all the reasons for doing homework right now will bring you rewards and will help you avoid pain now and in the future. Use your imagination and try to FEEL the outcomes of doing and not doing your homework.  

Try this exercise once, then review your list for a week and comment results.
Akaki T
WPI Graduate With Great Tutoring Ability
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
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