Top 10 productive ways to procrastinate

Insert subtitle here — sorry I was too busy procrastinating to come up with something creative

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Zachary Anderson is a Top 10 writer for The Cavalier Daily.

Riley Walsh | Cavalier Daily

1. Clean your room

Some people say that a messy room equals a messy life, and they might be right. Studies have shown that people who keep their living space clean tend to live healthier lifestyles. So in that case, go clean your room. It's good for you. It’s also a great way to organize your space and clear your mind before working on that dreadful term paper. 

2. Cook

Making your own food is a great way to spend time without feeling wasteful. The satisfaction that is associated with creating a homemade gourmet meal is unparalleled. The classic mac-and-cheese a la microwave is a dorm favorite. Don’t be afraid to be adventurous in your culinary explorations. Failure is feedback, so if the bread you tried to bake in the dorm kitchen has a texture more akin to pita chips, embrace it. Adulting is hard, but cooking can be a fun thing that in the end gives you something to eat and enjoy. Edible accomplishments — I’d take that any day.

3. Go to the gym

Exercise is a great way to burn off some unnecessary stress that can accumulate during the week, but not many people — myself included — are inclined to go to the gym. Although some excuses for not going to the gym are valid, people should recognize how good the gym is for the mind. It is a place where you can eradicate stress through exercise. 

4. Develop a new skill

Maybe dancing is something that you’ve always wanted to be good at, but you’ve never had the time to become involved in a dance group. Never fear, for the internet is here. There are many great sites, like WikiHow and YouTube, that can teach you new skills. I’ve never been able to snap my fingers, but the internet can teach me how. Maybe the skills you develop in your free time may evolve into a career in instead of your college degree … just kidding… unless?

5. Learn a new language

In the modern age, it has become much easier to learn a new language. With the development of language-learning apps like Duolingo and Babbel, people can easily access resources that encourage them to pursue fluency in another language. Duolingo has a rather interesting reputation for their mascot — the Duolingo owl — is notorious for sending passive-aggressive notifications to remind people to practice. Now, Duolingo has taken their encouragement to the next level — “Duolingo's new, in-person notifications can find you wherever you are. Ignore at your own risk.” This hilarious — but also terrifying — quote from DuolingoPush goes to show that there can be some good humor in learning a new language, and it could possibly be fun too.

6. Reconnect with old friends

FaceTime, Skype and other media platforms have made it really easy to connect with those old friends from your hometown. So why not take the chance to reconnect with that one girl that you were friends with in middle school? Recalling old memories and re-establishing a connection with an old friend are great ways to spend time. After I rekindled an old friendship, we found out we are majoring in the same thing.

7. Call your family

Rumor has it that your parents miss you more than you miss them. Don’t be afraid to call your parents. They are the ultimate support system that can motivate you to power through your procrastination habits — unless they don’t support your major. In that case, it might be better to call someone else — see entry number six. Keeping in touch with siblings is also a great idea, and they know how to cheer you up in times of struggle. Maintaining good connections with your family is also a great way to avoid awkward conversations at Thanksgiving — nobody wants their family to ask, “Why haven’t you called us? We miss you.”

8. Catch up on sleep

Classes really got you feeling tired? Well, look no further than your bed. Sleep is absolutely essential for all college students, and sleep deprivation can lead to significant drops in academic performance. What I’m trying to tell you is that you need to get enough sleep in order to do well in school. I admit that I sometimes prioritize sleep over studying because I’m a firm believer that sleep is more important than last-minute cramming. 

9. Do laundry

Nothing is more relaxing than slipping on some comfy clothes that are warm from the dryer. Doing laundry is a great way to clean up — see entry number one. I personally love the smell of fresh laundry straight from the dryer. Not only does it smell good, but it also creates warm and fuzzy vibes — like a hug from someone that you miss. This warmth can lift your spirits and encourage you to get back to that work you’ve set on the backburner. 

10. Go shopping

Going shopping can be as productive as you choose to make it. Grocery shopping for essentials? Productive. Spending hours on Amazon looking at cat shirts because they’re cute? Not productive. Shopping can be a way to plan for the future, but it can also be a way to spend time more inefficiently than completing that paper you’ve been putting off for six weeks. Overall, being productive depends on how you choose to spend your time in a way that is effective and helpful now and in the future. 

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