It is a highschool-based thesis about procrastination, its cause and effect, how to prevent it, some tips to improve time management, recommendation, conclusion and its history.
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Thesis Statement: Procrastination among high school students is not just a bad habit but it is perceived as extremely harmful for it can cause them high level of stress that results to behavioral disorders.
Introduction Do you experience a playful feeling that you are in mood starting making your projects but after a few minutes you will set aside your paper works and choose to check your phone if someone specifically your friends leave their messages? Many of high school students hobby is to procrastinate also known as mañana habit. They do not about to start the task they need to finish. They do not want to start the task they need to finish. They are fond of cramming. Well, there are students that say that their creative juices will help them when the deadline next to them. But few students can do this kind of habit and they use it as an excuse for their laziness. We cannot redeem time. When their teachers give a term paper or project, students need to brain storm and schedule the things they need to accomplish. “Excessive procrastination can result in many troubles. Overall procrastination will have a negative effect on students, studies and personal successs.”1 Teenagers are influenced by the magic of technology in their study habits. It is good to rest and have enough time to relax but they should know all their limitations and boundaries because it is not nice to do bad
1 Ronald Molmisa, Pass or Fail (Philippines:OMF Literature Inc. 2011), p.67
2 things; however, take note of the consequences that will happen after it is done. According to Queena Lee-Chua in her article “Rx for procrastination,” the word procrastination is derived from the word “procrastinus” which means forward and tomorrow. “Procrastination is the practice of carrying out less urgent tasks in preference to more urgent ones, or doing more pleasurable things in place of less pleasurable ones, and thus putting off impending tasks to a later time, sometimes to the “last minute” When teenager/students have a task to do, especially if they have given a lot of time, one of the initial reactions is to sit back and relax. Because of having a lot of time to do it there is a tendency for them to do some other stuff which will make them focus on doing the task divert to other things. After having fun, the word “start” pop-up that will lead them to panicking stage, rushing their work for the sake of finishing it. The effect of it is a low quality output because you only allotted a short period of time to prepare it. Bullying, cheating or drug abuse is not the most common problem of students because those three are insidious but procrastination is the most prevalent2 Procrastination is also known as student syndrome. Students are not aware that they are procrastinating because it became their habit; they think that it is normal or they observed that most of their classmates are procrastinating and with that observation they conclude that it is just
2 Quenna Lee-Chua,”Rx for Procrastination,”Philippine Daily Inquirer, June 12, 2011, p.14.
3 typical. Procrastination can also be considered as a contagious disease. Many students got the idea of procrastination from their friends who influenced them.
Types of Procrastinators Procrastination is widely practiced among students. There are a lot of forms of procrastinating; students can be classified according to the way they procrastinate. A. The Cleaner Organizing is making your things systematic and tidy, yet it could be a cause for you to procrastinate. Students, even a lot of people are quite irritated o messy surroundings but some of them are using cleaning as an excuse on hanging up their school requirements, hence committing procrastination.
4 This type of procrastinator has its pros and cons. They were able to organize their stuffs for a tidier environment but they were not yet done on what should be done like assignments and projects. They were able to accomplish one duty but still, they let the other task left hang which is supposed to be done immediately and urgently.
B. The Panicker Some students are used in procrastinating and cramming yet, they are afraid of getting caught. Over confidence is a reason of a “panicker” to procrastinate. Even before doing homework, some students could already underestimated the homework and setting it on a shorter length of time but the homework is a contrast to their expectations. This is one of the most usual scenario of a “panicker”.
C. The List Maker Do you think it is effective for a procrastinator to have a list of the task they need to do? It depends. Certified procrastinators would not think of making a list of the task they need to accomplish because they are too lazy to do it. A task list will not be completely marked unless the one who listed it, do something about it. The task should be listed with determination that you will finish it and make it possible. D. The Napper
5 After going home late, some students will do their assignment and they will eventually find themselves sleeping and dreaming about what they did before they sleep. Setting an alarm clock is good but sometimes students are not able to wake up because of tiredness which is their fault in the first place. Having fun is not bad but time management should be considered, especially by students. Students have a lot of time with their friends but when it comes to school matters, they set it aside for a short length of time. E. The Internet Researcher Living in the modern day, teenagers are fond of browsing the internet most especially in social sites. The internet is a rich source of information but some students who often procrastinate use the internet for entertainment which is a cause of procrastination. A little entertainment is not bad if other important things are done first.
Stand of Procrastination A. Causes of Procrastination All things came from a valid reason but when you procrastinate nothing is valid because you procrastinate for the sake of having fun or so that you could chat with your friends and shout in Twitter. Because of industrialization and other advancement of the society, the students have a lot of reasons to procrastinate.
Modernization Technology can make people lives easier but it can also teach them to be lazy as well. Maybe it depends on the person on what path he/she wants to take. The only ingredient is self-discipline- a behavior that you need to have in your hand for you to control yourself in using computer and cell phone. Under modernization, there are three social
7 pages that high school students are addicted to browse with that became the reason for them to procrastinate. a. Facebook Facebook is one of the most addicting sites in the world. It is used to communicate with other people. Communicating with other people does not seem to be addicting, right? Facebook is not just for communicating with other people; it can also be used to play games, to share what’s on your mind, to upload pictures, to be updated on what is the latest with your idol, to have some new friends, etc. It is the reason why people, mostly teenagers, procrastinate.
b. Wattpad Students interviewees answered that reading e-books entertain and also inspire them that made them caught up in the love stories like: “Diary ng Panget”, “Operation: Break the Casanova’s Heart” and “She’s Dating the Gangster”. Due to this so-called hobby, readers are vulnerable to procrastinate because it divides their attention and the fact that they can’t multi-task when you are reading. Wattpad is a special website where millions of works made by aspiring authors are compiled and shared to public. Some says
8 that the works published to this site are made special to all hopeless romantic readers who wish to have a perfect love life like what is written to the book of their own choice. Sad thing about this addiction shows that many students are very impatient when it comes to love. Love can wait and still high school students are still immature to serious type of relationship. “There are many fishes in the sea,” as the common saying says and there is no reason to rush. In addition, reading PDFs in cellphones causes our eyes to weaken because of the light that is concentrated and there are traces of Radiation. Eyes are pretty much precious and it needs care. Day dreams are fine as long as it never reach its ultimate, because reality is better than dream. It is better to live out your dream than to die living in the world of fantasy.
c. Youtube Listening to music can help motivate a person throughout the day. Some of the high school students are fond of watching videos or latest music of their favorite bands or artists. They tend to follow or listen to the latest craze coming from the internet. High school students also have access on violent videos like by using the internet.
9 All of these informative and entertaining vines and videos can be accessed on Youtube. Youtube is a website that allows internet users to watch videos uploaded by other people. Youtube contains a lot of videos that can be accessed by most people. It is also the source of most of today’s dance crazes. Youtube has a lot of videos that are entertaining. It causes procrastination because some students, who are supposed to do their task first, instead, watch the latest sensations on Youtube. After viewing a specific video, there’ll be a list of related videos that will be screened. Due to curiosity, the person will view the other videos concerning the video the person have just watched. After that, another list comes off. The person will be caught in a loop of curiosity of browsing videos and will only stop if the person feels satisfied. 2.
Study Habits Most habits negate the effect of studying on students. The habits may also cause procrastination. There are a lot of habits that students practice while studying. a. Scattered Focus Why do students keep on diverting their focus and doing other things instead? It’s because they find their main task/goal boring. So they tend to do other things instead. But sometimes, the reason why they commit scattered focus is that they have lots of things to do. And that makes them think a way to finish their tasks very quickly. So, they technically think that doing
10 all tasks at once help finish their tasks faster. But in reality, students are making things more complicated and messy. Having a lot of projects on the same week or date of deadlines is very confusing and will get you out of phase. Scattered focus will give stress to students that may cause them to leave the task and procrastinate. A to-do-list will help in organizing tasks.
b. Boredom Everyone is willing to work if it is fun to do but once boredom strikes, they cannot help it. High school students are easily bored. “Ningas kugon” is one of a common practice that leads people to procrastination. People who love to start their work but also leave it when they are starting to get bored are those who practice “Ningas kugon”. The reason why people, most specifically the students, get bored is because they lose interest in that work which they had in starting that work. Boredom is one of the enemies of good time management. When someone is struck by this powerful force, a new procrastinator is born.
c. Poor Time Management
11 Time management is another way to overcome procrastination. because students value their time, every second is important to them. Therefore, they will not delay the things they have to do. They will not put off impending tasks to a later time. Time management can also be applied to students because they often procrastinate so the result is cramming. And when they cram, the quality of their work is poor. The reason is they do no have enough time to polish their work. This is why time management is important. It doesn’t only lessen their tasks; it also make them more organized and disciplined. d. Perfectionism Perfectionism believes that they have to do something that will make others proud of them. “Nobody is perfect”, everyone commits mistakes and always have a chance to improve it. Perfectionism causes procrastination; when high school students are already finished with their projects and they have identified an error to their work, they will think a perfect or complicated idea that will lead them to procrastination because they have insufficient time to apply it in their finished project. They must take the initiative. They will become stronger, braver, more disciplined, more driven, and more focused. So recognize that the challenge of procrastination is truly a blessing disguise. The whole point is to grow stronger.
12 e. Laziness As a result of procrastinating, students become lazier than before. Laziness is the most effective poison to kill them achieving their goal and being successful. Once they decided to postpone their work, they become lazy to finish it. They will give many excuses to themselves so that they don’t need to complete their task yet. For instance, If they have an assignments during the holiday they will say that “Hold on, I have such a long time to finish it and everything is going to be okay.” Procrastination, together with laziness, will ruin your life. You can live your life once only. There is no second chance. Therefore; you need to kill your laziness before everything becomes too late. B. Effects of Procrastination Procrastination can cause negative effects to students and also to their behavior. It can cause anxiety, guilt feelings and sometimes their mood swings; it can cause poor performance. 1.
Stress When students are stressed, they feel irritated and there is a tendency for some to hurt other people. Stress is a mental disorder where in your feel that there is no way for you to surpass in something that is why sometimes, instead of doing their task, they just think of it and when they know that they cannot do it they will just sit and let their brain burst because of over thinking. The only thing that they can do is to relax and give themselves a time to enjoy.
Poor Quality Outputs
13 Another effect of procrastination is an unfinished task. Therefore; it can hinder them from being a good student. As a high school student, they cannot run and escape away their assignments. Besides, they had been given a lot of time to finish their duties/assigned task. As a good student, They are suppose to manage time wisely so that they can finish all the assignments on time but because of procrastination, they cannot make a quality output and there is a tendency for them that they will submit their assignments after the given deadline. Don’t attach yourself in the words, “Better late than Never”, because you misunderstood it and used it to cover your mistakes. 3.
Low Grades Maybe grade is not important to some high school students but they should start to love their grades and make their parents proud to them. If they really love their parents, they can sacrifice everything just to make them smile. Procrastination can lower down your grade; this is because you cannot complete your work on time, lack of revisions and exercises. Therefore, you cannot perform well in your exams. The consequence is in your grade. Only then you will realize that you’ve taken a wrong path. You need to go back from the start again. Give chance to yourself in order to get a good grade in your exam. According to Collins Dictionary, self esteem means how you feel about yourself. So if you have low-esteem, you can behave confidently. In procrastination, having low self-esteem means you don’t trust yourself. For example, a lot of requirements were given and
14 unfortunately you have low self-esteem, the tendency for you is that you’ll not do it because you believe that you cannot finish it. 4.
Anxiety Because anxiety is somehow a complex word, let us recall what anxiety means. Anxiety is a feeling of nervousness or worry. We connect anxiety to procrastination because procrastination means you delay things that you really have to do and that means you don’t care at all. Anxiety can also consider as a major factor that may lead students to procrastinate.
Overcoming Procrastination There are things that student should do so that they will not be victim of procrastination. Often, it is not how hard your project is; nevertheless, it is the attitude of the person who will do that certain task. A. Recognize that You are a Procrastinator If students will not accept that they are procrastinators, there will be a chance for them to not change for the better because there is a system inside their mind that says that it is just fine to procrastinate; besides, and they observed that they are not the only ones. Sometimes the truth will make them realize that they have to do something that will get them in better condition. It’s not a crime to admit that you procrastinate, in fact it is good to admit at least so that you know what to change in you and you know what is your weaknesses and try to enhance and change it by little.
15 B. Focus on Starting rather than Finishing The problem in some high school students they are over thinking how hard their projects are but they’re not thinking on how to start it. Because of that kind of thinking, they were more confused and challenged which causes big probability that they really can’t do it and be able to accomplish it on time. You should not worry yourself on how, when and where to start on your work but you should motivate yourself more on how to finish and vision in your mind what is your ideal finished look of your project. On that way, you will have a greed head forward on doing and finishing soon your work. Optimism never fails. C. Motivation to Change Motivation is the process of encouraging the subordinates to act in a desired manner. It can also help students to overcome procrastination. Lack of motivation may result student to feel that nobody care for them or a feeling that nobody wanted to lend their shoulder for them to be motivated. In the article “How to Overcome Procrastination Using Self Talk” the writer believes that even if motivation is high, students may still encounter tasks that they don’t want to do. In these situations, selfdiscipline works like a motivational back-up system. Motivation is the key to change. But it depends on the students if they are willing to change for the better or ignore the effects of procrastination to their personality and behavior. “We will make our assignments together” Rosette Tarinay, third year student. Friends play a big role in her motivational system and she
16 will not get bored in doing the task she need to accomplish because she can play a joke with her friend while doing the assignments they need to pass. D. Dealing with Fear of Failure Many students usually fail in their work because they are afraid to commit mistake that they will regret at the end of the day. The root cause of this fear is perfectionism. It is a practice where in the student’s mindset is in doing a great work that tends them to be a indecisive because their focus is scattered on making their work perfect Fear of failure is considered as one factor why students procrastinate because after seeing that there is something wrong in their finished work, they will think of something that will make it perfect. The problem is that they have insufficient time to change it. Another one, accept that nobody is perfect. Failure is a blessing in disguise because students will learn from it and will realize that everything happened for reasons
Survey Analyses Background Information: For the interview, students from grade 7, grade 8, third year and fourth year were taken as respondents. To have each year level be equally represented, 17 students per year level were interviewed, totaling to 68 respondents. Each of the respondents were asked by the following questions and their answers are shown in the results of the analyses.
THINGS STUDYING DONE(21.6%) BY STUDENTS AFTER GETTING HOME CLEANING (4.8%) SLEEPING (13.6%)
SURFING THE NET (30%)
WANDERING AROUND (0.8%)
WATCHING TELEVISION (1.6%)
EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITES (0.8%)
HANGING OUT WITH FRIENDS (1.6%)
SPORTS ACTIVITES (1.6%)
After getting home, 30% of the student respondents surf the net first before doing other things. Other things that a lot of students do are eating, studying and sleeping. There are only few respondents who do other things like watching television, texting, wandering around, sports activities,
18 extracurricular activities, and hanging out with friends. This data proves that most students give priority first in doing things in the virtual world like logging in Facebook, Twitter and all other social sites. Even though a big percentage of the respondents study before doing other things, most of the respondents take priority on surfing the net which is one justified reason of procrastination.
TIME CONSUMPTION OF STUDENTS BY DOING WORK STUDENTS THAT CONSUME ONE (1) HOUR
STUDENTS THAT CONSUME TWO TO THREE (2-3) HOURS
STUDENTS THAT CONSUME FOUR (4) HOURS
STUDENTS THAT CONSUME MORE THAN FOUR (4) HOURS
On the hours that the students are usually doing school tasks, the most numbered among the choices given are doing tasks within 2-3 hours which was chosen by 45% of the respondents, next is doing tasks for 1 hour which was chosen by 22% of the respondents, then doing tasks for 4 hours which was chosen by 17% of the respondents and lastly, doing tasks for more than 4 hours which was chosen by 16 % of the students.
STUDENTS WHO START THEIR OUTPUTS EARLY STUDENTS WHO DO THEIR OUTPUTS RIGHT AWAY (37.68%)
STUDENT WHO DO THEIR OUTPUT IN SOME OTHER DAY (47.83%)
STUDENTS WHO SETTLE FOR MEDIOCRITY (4.35%)
STUDENTS WHO DO THEIR OUTPUTS THE NIGHT BEFORE (10.14%)
Survey shows that the majority of high school students make their outputs project in some other day. Following the biggest portion of the graph is the percentage of students who will start their project as soon as possible. Third on the list are the people who will procrastinate that will surely make them cram for outputs that causes them to pass low quality project. Second to the last on the list are the secondary students who will not hesitate to give a low quality of project- mediocrity. Last on the list, which no one dares to answer, is being ignorant on the project itself.
STUDENTS' RESPONSE WHETHER THEY THINK THAT THEY'RE FRIENDS GREATLY INFLUENCE THEM TO PROCRASTINATE
In the data shown, most students answered “sometimes”. A lot of students responded positive while the remaining replied a negative. As shown in the data, most of the students’ friends only influence them to procrastinate not very often. This means that the friend/s could only influence the student to procrastinate depending on many situations. A lot also answered that their friends play a big role on influencing them to procrastinate which means that these friends could be a bad influence to them.
THE TIME WHEN STUDENTS START IMMEDIATELY (47.22%) WORKING ON A 10-PAGE REPORT (Given a specific scenario) THREE WEEKS BEFORE THE DUE DATE
TWO WEEKS BEFORE THE DUE DATE (6.94%)
ONE WEEK BEFORE DUE DATE (18.06%)
SEVERAL DAYS BEFORE THE DUE DATE (11.11%)
THE NIGHT BEFORE THE DUE DATE (0.00%)
Based on the graph, majority has answered immediately. Those people don’t want to rush their work. While 12 people chose to start working three weeks before it is due. It might be because they are preparing themselves for that task. Also for those who answered two weeks before it is due. Almost 20 people answered both one week before it is due and several days before it is due. Why? It is because they’re procrastinators.
FACTORS THAT PREVENT STUDENTS FROM DOING THEIR WORK WELL ENVIRONMENT (40.74%)
FINANCIAL TERMS (6.17%)
FRIENDS/ PEER PRESSURE (4.95%)
As we can see on the graph, the most common factors that prevent the students from doing their work well are their environment and stress. Other usual reasons are financial terms, technology, their friends or peer pressure and their personality- laziness. On this data, we can conclude that the environment of the student is a great factor that can hinder him/her from studying well. Other examples of that are family problems which are also a cause of the rebellion of children; as a result of the rebellion, children do not study well or they might even procrastinate. Another great factor that affects students from doing their work well is stress. Stress can also be a result of the student’s environment. There are several negative effects of stress including procrastinating.
STUDENTS' RESPONSE IF THEY ARE AWARE IN DOING PROCRASTINATION
Based on the graph, majority were procrastinating because their common response is that they were aware of it and they know that their works suffers the most. While some of the students aren’t aware of doing it or never have the guts to take the risk of procrastination. Also, there are also students who are not sure that they’re doing procrastination to the fact that they’re not familiar and confused about procrastination. Some of them tend to be ignorant of this idea or just taking time for granted--relaxed ones.
THINGS THAT SHOULD BE OBSERVED TO AVOID PROCRASTINATION ACCORDING TO STUDENTS TIME MANAGEMENT (40.58%)
Based on the graph, many students spend their time wisely for them to prevent from procrastinating, while some other students will do their tasks immediately and will be discipline to their works given. Lastly, the remaining ones would stop procrastinating because they keep in mind that it is their responsibility as a student to do their task as soon as possible.
PERCENTAGE OF STUDENTS WHO ARE AWARE THAT THEY WERE PROCRASTINATING
Based on the graph, Most of the students tend to give up because they don’t know where to start. Majority who answered yes feel depressed, stressed, frustrated, sad and ashamed. While students who answered no wanted to finish their assigned tasks for the sake of not to be part of so-called procrastinators, they tend to do their outputs as early as possible.
26 Procrastination, considered to be a syndrome among people especially in students, is form of laziness that causes poor outputs. This syndrome leads person to reach his best extent in doing such task and consider himself a mediocre. Mediocre persons are the ones who don’t value the word quality. They make tasks and never even bother exerting some effort to those specific tasks. They are the person who makes projects for the sake of completion. Putting off something or as we call it slacking is like the breaking the rule of discipline: choosing between what you want now and what you want most. People get bored and tend to find a way to lessen their stress load by entertainment. This is where distractions, more likely “the interesting stuff”, invade the organized or planned tasks. The largest and the common entertainment that is sufficient enough to feed the stressed minds of this generation is the social media websites such as Facebook, Youtube, Wattpad and etc.—all in one entertainment. Reducing stress is essential to our minds but excessive entertainment is a major devastation of planned process to reach goals. Sometimes the person itself is not the problem but the reward system or the motivation was not quite convincing. It is hard to make one stay to their path towards success. Procrastination is the mother inconvenience and cramming. Humans are vulnerable of distraction or the wrong path and that’s how life works—challenges to face. Remembering and achieving the ideal state in goal is the greatest prize received to those who give much effort and control the temptation of short happiness. Whenever and wherever, procrastination is a
27 part of human’s dictionary. Self-controlling, learning to prioritize, managing time, reducing distractions and putting on the motivated mode are the ingredients of success in every requirement given and prevention tips, and not a complete cure, of this disorder.
28 Based from the interview that we have conducted, we therefore conclude that procrastination is a bad habit among high school students in terms of studying which causes some physical and mental stress. Technology, which is prevalent at this time, and the environment, like circle of friends and peer pressure are some hindrances of effective studying habits among students. Some students consume in doing school tasks for prolonged hours because they’re doing duties and things that is not relatable on what they should do. And in terms of long deadline projects, some students tend to do it just a couple of days or worse, a night before the deadline because of the long time frame of preparation that is wasted in doing other things that is not relatable on the project that should be accomplish because they find it boring and they know that they have a lot of time before doing the task. There are some cases that they did not know where to start doing an activity. Some felt giving up. They felt helpless, clueless and useless but others say that they know they can do it.
29 This research will help in widening and broadening the perception of readers, specifically the high school students about procrastination. In this research, it elaborates procrastination’s definition, factors, causes and effects and some key points on how to manage and minimize it. Everything that surrounds us including ourselves, possess both positive and negative characteristics, perspectives and benefits. Its good causes, bad causes and effects could help solve your problem or make things more complicated. Even if procrastinating has some beneficial factors, it is still not good to commit it repetitively. A continuous and repetitious activity is a habit- a habit which is a tough thing to minimize or to change because you already get used to it. If you can minimize this bad habit, then do and start it. Even little by little until you can discipline yourself. There’s nothing wrong in choosing bad options but don’t expect a good result to your action. It is alright if you opted to do last minute works; you have freedom to choose and you yourself is the one who is responsible on your actions and its outcomes but of course, do not expect big rewards and good grades on what you have done. Lastly, in every action people are doing, optimism should always be put behind their back. Optimism will never fail. Future opportunities should always be sought by people and most especially by students.