How to productively procrastinate studying for midterms

Procrastination has become such an ugly word nowadays. You’ve always got to at least look like you’re up to something — no one wants to be that person at a Starbucks without a spreadsheet to go with their cappuccino. Everyone seems to forget, though, that getting stuff done can be exhausting, time-consuming and frankly a little overrated. So as a compromise, and mostly inspired by my own refusal to study, here are some strategies to help you avoid responsibilities in the most responsible ways possible.

Clean. Everything.

Cleaning to avoid work is a classic. Every meditation guide will tell you that our minds find it difficult to focus in messy surroundings. In this sense, decluttering is almost like a prerequisite to productivity — an important corollary here being we never have to work so long as we never run out of things to throw away. So bust out the fresh trash bags, organize your closet and wash every dish you can. It’s not procrastination, it’s self care.

Video essays

Imagine the coolest teacher from high school teaching film, English, science, philosophy and government — blows your mind right? Luckily, YouTube has tons of channels with enough animated visuals and low-fi hip-hop to go around, so you can at least return to that blank draft with a definitive understanding of the concepts from classical philosophy present in Pokémon Go.


Let’s round this out with a shocker and work’s perennial opposite — retro video games! Whereas today’s games can be problematic with their uses of micro-transactions and morally questionable operating conditions, Tetris is a simple game with clear rules and clear benefits. Playing this colourful classic for at least three minutes not only lets you avoid work, but studies have also demonstrated its effectiveness at decreasing the strength of cravings for addictive substances like nicotine, caffeine and alcohol. Not bad for a game most commonly referred to as “practically chess” by Tetris fans in denial all over the world.