Angie Solis, Head Editor, INALJ Missouri
My life as a procrastinator
As my time as a graduate student comes to a close I have been reflecting on the last two years I have spent at Wayne State University learning the ins and outs of Library and Information Science. I have gained so much knowledge throughout these years, but I didn’t want to write about the LIS knowledge I’ve gained, I wanted to write about what I’ve learned about myself over the last few years and what I learned about learning. So here goes:
Have fun with your work. This is one thing I always tried to do. Anyone who knows me knows I love welsh corgis (when I say love, I mean absolutely, head over heels, – I even made a website devoted to them plus an Instagram plus a Facebook page and it’s one of my most pinned Pinterest boards – in love) so I tried to incorporate corgis into assignments and things I did like making addresses say 123 Corgi St (It’s the little things that get me smiling). And you know what? I loved doing it. I loved adding a piece of quirky nerdiness into some otherwise mundane tasks. It made the unbearable, bearable even though it was such a small piece of the puzzle it was something I could control and something I could make my into a part of me. I think everyone should try having a little bit of fun every once in a while. You might start to enjoy yourself!
Networking is HARD! I know everyone says they hate networking but I really do hate it and I really do think it’s hard. And honestly it is a LIS student’s best friend. If you read my last blog post you would know that I attended a SEFLIN Conference in 2012 (right after I began the MLIS program). I went there to network and learn and just have a good time. I accomplished 2 out of 3 of those so all in all, not bad. But… I really wish I had networked. Let’s all be honest, in today’s world you get places if you know the right people and it’s really hard to meet the right people if you stay at home and don’t speak to anyone but your 3 welsh corgis and fiancée (cause they will NOT be helping you get a job no matter how cute they are). So if I was to give any MLIS student advice it would be this: Take your networking seriously!
Procrastination gives you more stress and gray hair. It’s true. Ok, maybe not 100% true, but I probably have my fair share of hypothetical gray hair. Just don’t do it! It hurts the procrastinator more than anyone else!
Get your work done early so you can do the things you want to do. So if you follow the rule to not procrastinate you really will have the time you need to do the things that you WANT to do. This should be enough right there to just dive in and get work done before anyone gets hurt.
Procrastination only leads to lack of sleep and wrinkles. This really is true. OK, so maybe not 100% but it’s true a lot of the time. I wish I could tell you about all the nights I spent awake, past my bedtime, working on an assignment that should have been completed days before. Instead of getting my beauty sleep I was up all night and the next day nothing could hide the dark circle under my eyes. So the lesson here is that procrastinating makes you look tired and tired is never a good look.
Participation is key. Participating in classes really is an important aspect of any graduate program. I personally don’t learn well from discussion boards or class discussions but that doesn’t exempt me (no matter how much I want it to) from the requirement. I wish I had participated more because I could have received a few better grades had I put in the extra time and effort just to add my 2 cents on the conversation.
Don’t procrastinate. Forget what I said earlier. If I give anyone advice it’s this: Don’t procrastinate!
Make friends (even at a distance). Just like networking friends in the LIS field can be beneficial not only for your professional life but also for your educational world and social sphere. I wish I had taken the time to get to know my classmates (even virtually) so that I could have someone to talk about the ups and downs of school with. Someone to share common tales of professors we hated and assignments we loathed. But I didn’t have any of that. I have my friends (who I love dearly) who just stare blankly at me while I try to tell them how much I hate using Dublin Core Metadata Elements.
Take it seriously while still having fun. I know this may seem like a contradiction but the biggest regret of my time as a graduate student was that I just wanted to get through it. Don’t get me wrong, I learned a lot, but I wish I had learned and retained more rather than just going through the motions to get my assignments done. It was probably attributed to procrastination.
Seriously, procrastinating is not cool. Enough said.
Obviously there is a recurring theme… I’m a procrastinator! I want to declare it from the roof tops and attend procrastinator’s anonymous meetings. But seriously, I would have been a much better student had I not procrastinated my way through graduate school. As I type this I am thinking about all the things I have put off for later and I’m not really sure why. I am in no way a terrible student but I think I would be a phenomenal student if I actually did things early rather than waiting til the last minute. Any students reading this should know that it definitely makes a huge difference in the quality of work you submit and I wish I had taken the route to Punctuality Land rather than the Late Canyon. So if you suffer from procrastination, I’ve found a few sites that may help you in your journey to end procrastination. Check them out and definitely let me know how your struggle is going. I’d love to talk and I’ve got your back if you ever need a friend! Good luck, and remember: Procrastinating is NOT cool!