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Opinion: The dangers of procrastination

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As a teen, I know at least 99 percent of my teenage friends are chronic procrastinators, including me. Many blame the culture of high school students — the cliche “high schoolers are lazy and all they want to do is sleep.” While that may be true for some of us, people are taking this issue too lightly. Procrastination is a bad habit and has negative effects that some may not even consider.

In order to understand the dangers of this widespread procrastination especially in high schoolers, we should take a look at the causes. Our phones are obviously one of the main culprits. With Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, YouTube, and Netflix readily available to us how could we possibly get all our responsibilities done?

Rachel Cho, a student from West Ranch said that instead of doing homework she mostly spends time on her phone on such apps. The problem also stems from too much emphasis on deadlines. We think, “as long as I meet the deadline, it is okay.”

I believe this mentality is triggered by the constant and overbearing amount of work high schoolers are subjected to. With tons of homework (and extracurriculars piled on top of it) many feel overwhelmed.

Elementary schoolers, for example, are far less likely to procrastinate because they have fewer stresses and responsibility in their lives. But with more workload, many high school students cope with the stress by putting it off until last minute.

Everyone procrastinates every so often, but the danger arises when it becomes a habit. In fact, there is a difference between regular and chronic procrastination.

According to the Harley Therapy article “Chronic Procrastination — Why Is it a Big Deal?” procrastination becomes chronic when it starts to affect every area of one’s life. When this behavior becomes a habit that seems impossible to break, it can even be defined as a disorder. Of course, the consequences are numerous and include both mental and physical effects. Depression, loss of sleep, and feelings of guilt are all related consequences of chronic procrastination.

However, we can’t always be on top of our work 24/7. It’s an unrealistic expectation, but taking steps to break the habit of procrastination wouldn’t hurt! Whether it’s starting homework earlier or keeping your phone outside of the room, a conscious effort will earn us more time and, something we all crave, more sleep.

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