Colleges have been fooling students for years. We think we’re challenged by difficult course material, late nights in the Brown Library or long papers. Really, we are challenged less by what is due and more by when it is due.
We are challenged to create time.
Papers, presentations and tests are not fun, but they are doable. How easy would it be to study for a test that you could take whenever you were ready? What if you could create a pocket of time, perhaps a 25th hour, to complete an assignment? After three years, “time creation” seems to be the unspoken assignment no one warned me about and that I can never complete.
Imagine receiving a syllabus, skimming over the assignments and hearing the professor say, “Take all the time you need to complete these.” Would college be such a challenge?
We’d still face tough assignments, but we wouldn’t have to face deadlines inching closer with every passing moment. We could complete assignments when we’d caught up on our sleep, when we felt at peace with the drama in our lives, when we felt inspired to push our academic limits and when we’d run out of ways to procrastinate.
Unfortunately, college doesn’t work like this, because real life doesn’t work like this. Professors advise us to “find time” to complete these assignments, as if time sprouted legs and ran toward the better life we’re all hoping college will lead to. How can we find the time to do something if we are convinced we never had it in the first place?
It all comes down to time management. The time is there; we just haven’t discovered how to make the most of it. Stop trying to find time to get an assignment done. You never will. We have to stop stressing for a moment and learn to use what’s in front of us.
Maybe if we start thinking of time as something we’ve had all along, it will be easier to take advantage of. Maybe we’ll even get some homework done in the process.