It’s coming to that time of the year where you have a shit load of assignments due at the same time. If you’re lucky enough to get more than a few days in between due dates, you’re pretty safe. But for a lot of us, a heap of these assignments are due in the same week and for a really unfortunate few, there will be deadlines all on the same day. The usual procedure of leaving everything to the night before isn’t going to work- you’re just not going to have enough time to get all your shit done (trust me, I’ve tried). So what do you do when all your teachers have it out for you and set all your assignment to be due in the same week?
Stop rolling your eyes, this is legitimate advice. You know what you have to do to get everything done, you just choose not to do it. The best thing you can do for yourself is just do something, anything, related to your assignments right now. Knock one little thing off your to do list and you’ll be on the way to having your shit together. Take this as your sign to stop fucking around on Facebook and start your work.
For most of us the thing that motivates us to actually get started on an assignment is the looming deadline. When it’s weeks away it’s easy to continually put off doing any work until the very last minute. This is why you need to make some fake deadlines. Tell yourself one of your assignments is due the week before it actually is. Tell your teacher you’ll be handing it in early and trick yourself into thinking the fake deadline is the real one. Even if you leave it to the last minute of the fake due date, it’ll be a lot less stress than trying to finish two or three assignments at once before you legitimately get penalised for late work.
This means things like picking the essay question or hunting down quotes that you can use. Knocking a couple of easy things off your to do list will get your momentum going with minimal effort. Once you’ve started something, you’ll find enough motivation to keep pushing through till the end, it’s all about getting the easy shit done first.
Once you’ve got this momentum started from crossing off all the easy tasks, keep it going. If you’re in the groove while writing your essay, don’t stop until you have to. While regular breaks are important, you need to take advantage of any and all motivation you encounter by smashing out as much work as possible when you can. Now isn’t the time for slowly chipping away at an assignment- you need to get it done, and get it done now.
The amount of times I’d tell myself I could just start tomorrow and have heaps of time to finish an assignment was too damn high. I’d promise myself I’d definitely start tomorrow, so it was totally okay for me to fuck around, nap and watch Netflix today. Except I’d never actually start the next day. I’d just constantly put it off until I literally had hours or minutes until the assignment was due. Don’t lie to yourself- you know you’re not going to feel like doing it in the morning or after work, so don’t tell yourself you will.
You will always underestimate how long it takes to properly reference everything. If you take one piece of advice from this article, let it be that referencing as you go is a literal lifesaver. Referencing as you go is a painful process, where you will question your ability to use commas and italics, but what’s even more painful is doing it all in one massive go.
Look, even if you do end up smashing out two essays hours before they’re due, just remember that it will be over soon. The deadline will come, you will hand something in (even if it’s all crap) and you’ll be able to rest easy knowing that at least you did it. Eventually, you’ll cross the finish line and be able to go to bed/watch another Netflix series/start procrastinating the next assignment. Just get through it.