In college, and maybe in life, it seems like workloads come in waves. You’re just coasting along, eating a fair amount of cookies in the dining hall, averaging about a season of Breaking Bad a week, when suddenly you take a look at that syllabus you forgot existed. It looks like you’ve got a pretty hefty exam coming up next Monday. And that 2,000 word research paper you’ve been putting off, that’s also due Monday at midnight.
This one syllabus reminds you of those few other syllabi-things you printed out a couple weeks ago, so you figure you should probably check them too. And hey, would you look at that? An exam on everything you’ve covered in Spanish so far, next Monday.
Then you take a break from Breaking Bad to meet with your school’s Undergraduate Research Journal supervisor, who is thrilled to hear about your interest in writing an article for the journal– in fact, would you be able to have a draft in by next Monday?
So now you’re starting to panic a little bit, but it’s totally fine because your favorite class is up next, it’s mostly discussion based and a major GPA boost. Except right as you’re about to walk out the door at the end of class, your professor throws out a reminder about that reaction paper you’re supposed to have been working on. You check the syllabus (the only one you didn’t look at earlier, you figured you’d be in the clear) and realize that the reaction paper is due– you guessed it– next Monday.
This chain of events seems to happen about every 2-3 weeks. Julie and I refer to the day of impending academic doom as Hell Day, or sometimes D-Day if we’re feeling historical. Today was the Monday after Homecoming weekend, and reality bitch-slapped me so hard I may have lost a few teeth. So in honor of my own personal D-Day, I have constructed a list of things to do when you have too many things to do, from a procrastinating professional herself. Enjoy, my friends.
- Check Facebook. Peruse pictures from this weekend for the 81st time. (Look how much fun I was having! Just 24 hours ago!)
- Check Tumblr. Cringe a few times. Contemplate writing a couple verses of angsty poetry.
- Get the hell off Tumblr.
- Check Twitter. Engage in witty Twitter banter with your roommate who is also procrastinating on the other side of the study lounge. Make sure everyone can tell you’re the wittier one. (Suck it, Jules.)
- Call your mom. (She doesn’t believe you’re the wittier one, but she doesn’t know what she’s talking about.)
- Dance to this song in your underwear.
- Take a walk. (Studies show that 20-30 minutes of outdoor activity can improve your ability to write papers a few hours from now.)
- Make up statistics in your head to justify the fact that you just walked circles around campus for 45 minutes in an attempt to not do your paper. (Studies show that 45 minutes is actually even more beneficial than the originally planned 20-30.)
- Watch this video.
- Watch that video again.
- Succumb to the long list of Louis CK “Recommended For You” YouTube videos that are calling your name.
- Maybe check out some John Mulaney too.
- Write motivational sticky notes to yourself to put on your desk. (Never Stop Exploring. Clear Your Mind of Can’t. Today’s Soups Are Tomorrow’s Poops.)
- Start your paper you idiot, next Monday is gonna be here a lot sooner than you think.