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Five Excellent Ways to Procrastinate (when you should be finishing your assignment)

Wednesday 6th Mar 2019

There comes a point in almost every day when you find yourself avoiding a necessary task. No matter what that task is, these tried and true methods are possibly the best ways to put off doing it, and return to the task feeling refreshed and renewed by a sense of accomplishment. 

This March we’ll kick off our second annual Tertiary Blood Challenge, encouraging students across Australia to donate blood and save lives. To mark this incredible challenge, which saved more than 38,000 lives last year, we present to you five stellar options to procrastinate on that overdue essay, report, spring clean, or grocery shop. 

  1. Donate plasma. Giving plasma gives you a little more time on the couch than donating blood, which means you have more idle moments to peruse your social media feeds, read a book, get through some podcasts, catch up on Netflix, or just sit and enjoy the peaceful act of doing nothing whilst saving lives. 
  2. Go for a walk, and take a friend with you. Getting away from your immediate environment can have a positive impact to derail your procrastination, and if you have someone else relying on you for that walk, even better! Search for dog shelters in your area and ask if they need volunteers to walk some animals a few times a week. The walk will help to hit the refresh button on your brain, and you’re doing good at the same time. 
  3. Make a phone call. Support socially isolated members of the community by making early morning welfare calls for the Australian Red Cross. It’ll make everyone feel good about putting off your essay for 10 more minutes. 
  4. Let your brain do some percolating, while you keep your hands busy. Albert Einstein was in favour of procrastination. He believed doing nothing was a key part of generating creative ideas. Doing nothing, you’ll note, was also one of the benefits in our first suggestion of donating plasma – so you can tick off two ideas in one! 
  5. Light-hearted relief. Pretend the floor in your room is hot lava. Practice your autograph for when you become famous. Knit a tiny scarf for your cat. Visit YouTube to learn how to pour shapes in your latte. While you’re there, look for videos of dogs with hiccups. Lighten your mood, escape the feeling of pressure for 10 minutes, and when it’s time to return to the task at hand you’ll feel more energised to tackle it. 

One of Newton’s laws of motion states that an object in motion stays in motion unless acted upon by an outside force. To put that more plainly, once you start achieving things, the reward centres in your brain light up and encourage you to achieve more things to keep that happy buzz coming. By doing any of the things on this list, you’ll set yourself in a motion that can carry you through to completing your assignment, your work report, or even just a load of laundry you’ve been putting off.