Carnegie Mellon University

Student Academic Success Center

Office of the Vice Provost for Education

I find myself putting off tasks I know I should do.

Step 2: Identify possible reasons for the problem you have selected.

To find the most effective strategies, select the reason that best describes your situation, keeping in mind there may be multiple relevant reasons.

Procrastination: everyone suffers from it at some point, even the very best students. Procrastination can sometimes just be a sign that we need a physical or mental break, while other times it can more seriously affect our work and quality of life. The first step to beating procrastination is to identify what type of procrastinator you are – perhaps you are a perfectionist, or a crisis-maker, or even a dreamer. Read below to find and fix what causes you to lose those precious hours in your day.

I’m a perfectionist; all details need to be perfect, and it’s difficult for me to finish tasks.

I’m a worrier; I have a fear of failure, am anxious about expectations, and prefer my comfort zone.

I’m a crisis-maker; I work best under pressure and am usually finishing tasks at the last minute.

I’m a dreamer; abstract thoughts are more appealing than real life tasks.

I’m an over-doer; I take on too much, it’s difficult for me to prioritize, and I can’t say “no.”

I’m a defier; tasks seem unfair or unnecessary, and I like to maintain control of situations and my sense of individuality.

line drawing of monthly calendarSchedule a 30 Minute Consultation

This site supplements our 1-on-1 consultations. Staff members are available Monday-Friday, 9:00 am - 5:00pm EST for a virtual consultation to help get you connected to the appropriate resource or resources.