This I Believe

Amanda - Camden, North Carolina
Entered on April 30, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe procrastination is the best method for approaching my school work. The rush I feel when trying to complete a project just before class starts adds spice to my life. Besides the thrill of it all, I have discovered that procrastination leaves me more unscheduled time to enjoy myself, and later forces me to work more efficiently.

I practice my procrastination techniques most effectively on weekends. I try to do my homework on Friday afternoons, I really do, but if I don’t have any clean clothes left, as is usually the case, laundry becomes my number one priority. On Friday evenings, I hone my people-watching skills on Franklin Street. There are plenty of quirky characters on that street to keep my eyes busy.

Saturday mornings start with great intentions to begin my work, but complications inevitably arise. I download onto my MP3 player all the 90s rap songs that I haven’t been able to get out of my head the previous week. That music will get the creative juices flowing, after all. Then, my roommate and I must travel to nearby Carrboro, the funky, arts town sprouting out of Chapel Hill. We may grocery-shop, treat ourselves to lunch, or lie down and relax on the lawn outside the market. I like listening to the soothing melodies of the old man playing the guitar there. After the trip, a four-hour nap seems like a good idea. I have a recurring nightmare during these naps that always afterwards prompts me to make sure the Internet still exists. I confirm this by visiting three crucial sites: Myspace, Facebook, and YouTube. After three hours of research, I come to the conclusion that, once again, my dream has deceived me. Of course, working on Saturday nights is out of the question; there are parties to frequent and far too many distractions to focus on anything. Sundays are supposed to be a day of rest. Therefore the only time left to start schoolwork for Monday is on Sunday night. (No one said it was a night of rest, after all.) I normally start working that night for Monday morning’s five classes—from chemistry to Italian. It’s on Sunday nights that my weekend procrastination techniques both punish and thrill me as I rush to get everything done.

That thrill is akin to a rollercoaster ride. The process of beginning my work is slow, like a rollercoaster’s crawling ascent. As the peak of Sunday evening draws near, I nervously calculate the amount work ahead. At that point, I have no choice and must dive head first into my work. It’s like the first, sudden drop of a rollercoaster, where gravitation pulls you down, soon followed by your innards. The work goes quickly then as I go up and down from assignment to assignment, sometimes turning upside down in the craziness of it all. At some point, I finish my work and the coaster comes to a halt. Yet the rush lingers on.