“Don’t leave it to the last minute”. I appreciate this is one of those easier-said-than-done things, but nothing rewarding or precious is ever really easy to attain, so moot point.
Everyone studying or in the workforce has some kind of ‘to do’ list each day. Some people won’t look to theirs as a burden; others will despise the very pen with which it is written. Either way, there are always going to be things that need to get done by certain times. End of. Particularly in industries dictated by strict deadlines, it’s easy to let the day drive you. It’s easy to become a passive passenger in your career car, merely facilitating the ride by completing tasks when they’re due.
One of the first reasons not to leave things to the last minute is that it can be very stressful. Whether you’re a student or a worker, last-minute leaving is often a symptom of procrastination. If you have a looming deadline and you keep leaving the work until the eleventh hour, you’re likely to elevate your stress levels.
2. NOT YOUR BEST
Another byproduct of leaving things to the last minute is substandard work. Sometimes, if you have done something under pressure and with little to no time to review and re-do, it will not be your best work. Give yourself time to do the best you can. Having said that, I know there are many people who can produce great work under pressure and actually work better that way. But wouldn’t you prefer to have the time to be able to do your very best?
Chaos is another reason not to leave things to the last minute. Who wants to have their papers and books strewn all over the place because they have had to get something done super quickly? Sitting and staring at the floor with your hands on your head is not very good for your well-being and the chaos and pain can infiltrate the brain!
4. BAD HABITS
One of the other reasons not to leave things to the last minute is that it can lead to bad habits. If you’re someone who has worked quite well leaving things to the last minute at college, it may not necessarily see you in good stead in the work place. You may not be able to produce the same standard of work in those different circumstances.
5. UNFORESEEN CIRCUMSTANCES
One of the reasons I hate leaving things to last minute is because of the ‘What ifs?’ I’m not someone who always thinks negatively but I like to think practically and I do like the age old adage: ‘don’t put off for tomorrow what you can do today.’ I always think to myself, what if I need to something else tomorrow? This spurs me on to live in the moment and accomplish what I can, when I can.
6. MIGHT TAKE LONGER
Another reason not to leave things to the last minute is that you may find the work actually takes longer than you anticipated. Maybe you have to write a paper for college and you find that you need a particular book but you can’t get it out of the library because it’s 11pm and it’s closed! Aaaargh. Cue stress and chaos and a puffy eyed morning because you just didn’t get enough sleep.
Do you really want to have regrets about what might have been, just because you have left something to the last minute? It’s hard if all you’re thinking is “If only I had started that a day earlier, I would have done so much better.” Try giving yourself more time so that you won’t have those regrets about how much better you would have performed had you just given yourself a little more time.