With this post, I officially become the poster child of hypocrisy. While I’m all for planning out studying for finals and making completion plans for big projects, that has totally escaped me for a major assignment for one of my classes this semester. I have a huge project due at the end of this week, and it’s something I definitely should have started earlier in the semester. But did I do that? Nope. I’m doing it at the last possible minute (even though I knew I also had a big test this week), so I’ve accepted that this week will be full of late nights and copious amounts of caffeine. So if you ever read this blog and think, “wow, this chick really has it together all the time,” here’s a big flashing neon sign that NO, I DON’T.
However, we are about a month out from finals, and that brings a whole other breed of tests and projects. Big cumulative finals and projects seem to elicit a kind of procrastination you never experience with short-term assignments; it’s so easy to push the long-term projects off, and then you end up trying to do an entire semester’s worth of work in a few days. This inevitably results in performance that’s less than what you’re truly capable of, so it’s important to try to avoid this last-minute rush.
Solving the Problem
The easiest solution to unintentionally leaving huge projects to the last minute is planning. Project planning is a huge skill and it’s immensely helpful when it comes to getting through studying or assignments in advance. By creating self-imposed deadlines, you have a much easier method of tracking your progress on an assignment and ensuring that you have plenty of time to perfect it before it’s due or to fully sharpen your skills before the exam.
Planning out a project or building a study plan is also a great way to make the task seem more manageable. Breaking it into bite-sized pieces can morph an ominous 20-page paper into a page a day, which seems so much less intimidating. A step-by-step plan ensures that you do everything in the right order, and you don’t get to the end of your project and realize you forgot an important early step.
Want an easy way to create a project plan? I’ve got a new printable to help you with that! By subscribing to my emails, you get free access to this project planning printable (below) as well as my semester goals sheet and other exclusive content! If you’re looking to reduce your stress come finals season, go hit up that subscribe button right now.
Above is an example of how you can use this sheet. I used it for my final research paper for my Economics of Law class, and it’s a great way to map out what you need to get done throughout the semester. You can also be as detailed or as vague as you want with your steps.