The Art of Procrastination

There is something very inviting about procrastination; not doing what you really ought to be doing, in favour of doing something that is either productive indirectly, or productive in terms of increasing your knowledge of Channel 4 “mockumentaries” or spending money your student budget doesn’t cover, or chatting to your friends on Skype. However, it becomes a paradox in that there is a guilt underpinning the procrastination, and said victim of procrastination is likely to be sitting around saying “I really should be doing…”. And thus begins a cycle of unproductive behaviour and subsequent lack of self-worth.

Therefore, the art of procrastination is to only do it when it will actually be productive to do so; for example, when you’re about to rush into buying another woollen jumper that you don’t really need, or when you’re considering going to sit in the student union all night, spending disproportionate amounts of money in relation to the amount of fun you actually will have. You should procrastinate here. This kind of procrastination is what I’m going to call “positive.”

However, being a student, I’m learning about procrastination; procrastination on reading invariably makes it harder and harder to begin such a venture, leading to the hapless look on a person’s face in a seminar when they realise that they really should have done a little research into the concept of Greek catharsis, or Aristotle’s explanation of the tragedy. Also, by not doing to reading, life becomes slightly less enjoyable, because you become a tiny tadpole in an ocean of knowledge, about to be eaten by the sharks swimming around. So procrastination is a bad thing in this scenario.

There are also little everyday scenarios where procrastination may be a negative thing, for example. Procrastinating of laundry, which leads to a lack of clean clothes and an ever-growing pile of dirty t-shirts in the corner of your room. This inevitably creates the smell of socks. Also, if you procrastinate in either the buying or preparing of food, your diet begins to consist of supernoodles, cup-a-soup and Kitkats. A typical student existence then.

But, speaking for myself, I only procrastinate on two occasions: exhaustion and illness. I lack the strength of will for extensive procrastination, you see; the guilt eats away at me, ruining the supposed relaxation anyway. So now, I’m off to investigate The Second Sex, by Simone De Beauvoir, to stave off any potential seminar regret tomorrow.

(:

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