How to have even more of an essay crisis

Shake things up for HT15

essays procrastinating work

The mark of any good Oxford student is being able to procrastinate in style. When faced with an essay deadline the following day, the challenge then becomes how to leave starting it to the last possible minute.

Choosing the right form of procrastination is key: here’s our ranking of the best methods of not dealing with your workload.

Social media

Time sucker

Time sucker

A classic. Minutes turn into hours with aimless browsing of your Facebook feed. For bonus points, make each action take as long as possible. Ponder for 20 minutes on the wording of your comment. Stare at that photo until your eyes burn, deliberating whether it really needs a RT. And to really suck up the time, get into an argument with someone on Twitter.

There are only so many times you can refresh your feed though, and eventually the content well will run dry and you’ll feel forced to confront that problem sheet. Social media’s good, but it’s not perfect.


Reading The Tab (or Buzzfeed/MailOnline/Vice)

You're already doing it

You’re already doing it

With the wealth of content available on The Tab, this is obviously the best idea here. Clickbait headlines have never been so useful. The infinite scrolling works in your favour, but ensure you click related articles to get the most out of your not-really-free time. If you get really bored, you could even read some of the sponsored content. Avoid the Mail’s sidebar of shame though, you’ll become suicidal after 20 minutes.


Going to your friends’ rooms

This necessitates pissing your friends off and dragging them down to your inevitable 3rd. If you can live with the guilt, this is an excellent method to abstain from actually doing anything productive. Enjoyable and less isolating than the others, it can even make you feel good about yourself. Beware of so called “friends” that will act as your conscience and try and get you to do work though. They’re no fun.





Enjoyable. Messy. Potentially guilt-inducing. Limited repeatability.


Netflix binge watching

You know you love it

You know you love it

A more modern approach, this one can cost you a bit (£5.99 a month, to be specific). But whether you go for the cerebral Breaking Bad or a more mindless reality show (both Made in Chelsea and TOWIE are available), streaming hours of TV shows is a top way to make the time fly by. The endless choice increases your procrastination options exponentially, and if you’re feeling brave you can even try and binge a movie series (complete Pixar marathon, anyone?).

Your choice of entertainment matters immensely though: pick the wrong show and you’ll grow bored quickly. You don’t want your mind to wander to your essay topic too quickly now…


Tidying up

This should be bottom of the list. But if things get really desperate and you’ve exhausted your other options, a thorough clean of your room could be the perfect way to postpone your work. Whether it’s sorting out your clothes, finally doing your bedding or sorting through that stack of paper on your desk, tidying is a decent way to feel productive whilst not doing what you’re supposed to be doing. Beware filing though: it might actually be helpful for your work. Avoid.



Writing for The Tab

meta as fuck

meta as fuck

I take my earlier comment back: this is the best form of procrastination. Enjoyable and looks good on your CV – but it’s still not actual work. If you’re not going to get a first, may as well get famous instead.


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