How to Handle Kids that Procrastinate

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Procrastination is an undesirable habit that plagues a lot of people. From adults all the way down to little children, procrastinating seems to be something that people everywhere struggle with. Can it be helped though? While procrastination promotes waiting for the last minute to do something, someone can find themselves extremely overwhelmed by the time the due date reaches especially if they’ve been procrastinating doing multiple assignments that are due on the same day. This can cause anxiety and lead to someone losing sleep staying up later to finish these assignments. I remember many times throughout college where I’ve had to pull all nighters to finish assignments that I continually postponed until the last minute. On top of this, procrastination can cause you to miss out on many things that are important to you whether that be time at the gym or fun plans that you have made with friends. 

You may think that it’s not as bad for children but if allowed to procrastinate at will, they will nurse a tendency that will only grow more out of control as they get older. That is why it is important that while they are under their parents roof, they are taught discipline and task management. 

Like many things regarding teaching children something, it all begins with the parents. You can’t teach your children good discipline and task management if you yourself don’t have it. Children are constantly watching their parents and oftentimes imitate their behavior. So, if you are constantly putting things off until the last minute, your children will do the same. 

One thing that you can do is keep a family calendar whether that be online or a physical copy that you stick to the fridge. Write down any assignments or projects that you need to get done and when you’d like to get them done by. You should also write down when you are going to work on them in advance so you aren’t scrambling on the due date. After doing that for a while, encourage your children to write down any assignments that they may have and how they can plan ahead so they have plenty of time and won’t have to stress the day that it is due. 

By being disciplined yourself and setting up this family calendar, you help to instill positive qualities that will help them in school, work, and life in general. This doesn’t mean they will be perfect just like you yourself as a parent will never be perfect. There will be times when assignments don’t get done until the last minute or things come up unexpectedly and they end up with three assignments all not done and the due date is upon them. That is okay! Life is filled with unexpected hurdles and challenges, and you shouldn’t be one to your child when they are already struggling by lecturing them about being disciplined. Instead, ask them what happened and how you can help. No matter how disciplined you are, everyone needs help sometimes.

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