Procrastination is one of the greatest obstacles that we have to overcome as students. in fact, I’m sure each of us has a story about how we wasted a day watching YouTube, browsing social media sites etc but not getting any work done. And this is usually in spite of the fact that we do have something to do, but we are unwilling to get started. Overcoming procrastination then is indeed one of our most feared challenges.
Fear not though! You are definitely not alone in this. In fact, most elite students face the procrastination challenge everyday. Even at the university level, I still dread doing certain work because I know I’ll be challenged. Hence, it is important to note that successful students are successful not because they don’t face procrastination. Rather, they are successful in spite of facing the appeal of procrastination.
So how do we go about conquering procrastination? The very fact is that this is a daily task. But it is not an insurmountable one. Let me present to you, the Pomodoro Technique. Well, I certainly did not come up with such a catchy name, so I have to give credit to Francesco Cirillo, who developed this technique in the 1980s.
So what is the Pomodoro Technique about?
The premise is really simple- all you need is 25 minutes of uninterrupted time (that means no social media, no mobile phone etc). Instead of trying to complete all homework in one shot (which usually needs a few hours), we aim to just spend 25 minutes on it. That’s right, so long as you spend 25 minutes on it, you have already won the battle for that day!
Once you’ve set your timer to 25 minutes, you just start the timer and do your work. Remember, it doesn’t matter if you don’t complete the work for that day. So long as you spend 25 minutes that day, you already succeed!
Once the timer is up, you can stop your work. At this point in time, you can take a short 5 minutes break. After 5 minutes, if you still desire to do some more work, then you’ll set the timer for 25 minutes and repeat this cycle.
The beauty of this technique is that instead of facing a huge, insurmountable task, all we need to do is take a small bite. And at any time in between the 25 minute sessions, we can walk away, which takes the pressure off us.
In fact, this is indeed a technique that I use a lot myself. The next time you feel yourself procrastinating, take out a timer and give this technique a try! Let me know if this helps in overcoming procrastination in the comments below.
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