Procrastination (noun): The art of putting off important stuff off until you reach panic mode. We all succumb to it at some point or another, and if you don’t, I’m jealous of your motivation (or prescription). It takes a special kind of person to strategically procrastinate. It’s the happy yet confusing medium of your life spiraling out of control, but somehow still keeping your shit together. However, if you’ve yet to reach this level of supreme mediocrity, allow me to be your spirit guide.
Stage 1: Put it off. This seems obvious, right? It’s the entire point of procrastination. I mean, that term paper or expense report isn’t due for another two days? Time to go out on the town and enjoy a beverage (or four). As Ellen DeGeneres once famously said, “Procrastinate now, don’t put it off.”
Stage 2: The warmup. You may think you’re getting your bearings, but this is somewhat of a false start. You’ve opened your computer, but before you start on that blank Word document or Excel sheet, this is the time to do literally anything else. For example, I’m currently flipping back and forth between Facebook stalking and taking BuzzFeed quizzes to see what kind of ice cream flavor I am as I write this. Whoops.
Stage 3: ‘Productive’ distractions. Time to grab a coffee. Check your email. Update your resume. Trick yourself into thinking you’re working really hard. Something a productive procrastinator would say? “I’m taking care of things, just you wait and see!”
Stage 4: Face reality. Alright, seriously, quit scrolling through your newsfeed and maybe instead of Snapchatting your Unicorn Frappachino, drink it. Time’s a tickin’ and your mound of workload is growing exponentially. Take a deep breath and get it together, because Stage 5 is when the shit hits the fan.
Stage 5: Full-blown panic attack. F*ck, now you’re in panic mode. Some may stress over this stage, but this is where the magic happens. That report is due in less than two hours? Not to fear, anxiety is here. We have Neil Patrick Harris to thank for giving us the mantra: “Nothing makes a person more productive than the last ten minutes.” Time to do the damn thing.
In order to succeed in the way I personally and professionally find impressive, never forget: Waiting until the last minute to get your work done means you will be older, and therefore wiser.
P.S. For those of you wondering if I submitted this article on time? C’mon now, I put the ‘pro’ in procrastinate.