self-defeating behavior patterns I have is procrastinating. I know that many students suffer from this behavior pattern and struggle with it, but in my case, I consider it a serious problem that has influenced my academic work. Because of procrastinating, I sometimes have to work fast (and thus imperfectly) at the last minute and work under stress. I may even not be able to finish my work in time because of not starting to do it earlier.
For example, recently I needed to write an analytical essay for my English class. I had the whole weekend to do it. Although I did some important things during those days, I kept postponing the writing process until late Sunday. The paper was due the next day. It was a short paper, but since it was an analytical one, I had to stay late at night to finish it in time. I did not get enough sleep and the next day I was not sure if I did my job well enough to like it myself.
I think, the problem lies in my inability to focus on the most important tasks in time. I have many things to do every day most of the time, but I think I fail in properly prioritizing the most important tasks. Also, I realize that I spend too much time on social media. As I mentioned in the example, it makes my life harder. If I could get over this pattern, I believe I would do much better in my academic works. I would have a less stressful life and have more time to perfect my assignments.
1. I waste a lot of time doing unimportant things (e.g. television, video games).
2. I wonder if I'm "college material."
3. I easily get upset (e.g. angry, sad, anxious, depressed, guilty, frustrated).
4. I hang out with people who don't support my academic goals.
5. I believe that most people don't like me.
6. I often turn in college assignments late.
7. I get nervous around my instructors.
8. I worry excessively about doing things perfectly.
9. I think most of my classmates are smarter than I am.
10. I quit on things that are important to me.
11. I allow a person in my life to treat me badly.
12. I don't believe I deserve success as much as other people do.
13. I miss more college classes that I should.
14. I'm very critical of myself.
15. I wait until the last minute to do important college assignment.
16. I don't ask questions in class or participate in class discussions.
17. I often break promises I have made to myself or others.
18. I am addicted to something (e.g. caffeine, alcohol, cigarettes, soft drinks, video games, social networking Internet sites, drugs).
19. I experience severe test anxiety.
20. I feel uncomfortable about asking for help.
21. I don't get along with one or more people with whom I live.
22. I often side-talk or daydream in my college classes.
23. I seldom do my best work on college assignments.
24. I am very critical of other people.
25. I get extremely nervous when I speak to a group.
26. I keep promising to study more in college, but I don't.
27. I get my feelings hurt easily.
28. I am a loner.
29. I wonder if I can overcome my procrastinating behavior pattern.
One of my self-defeating emotional patterns is I am too much into social media, i.e. social networking websites. I hang out with friends via Facebook and by chatting online and I post frequent updates to my Facebook account. It all started with my desire to keep in touch with my friends and improve my English language skills but I feel that I spend too much time on it.
For instance, in the example I mentioned earlier, I spend the entire weekend without working my English class assignment not only because of other important things I had to do, but also because I spent too much time on Facebook. I should also emphasize that, in addition to killing so much time of mine, social media engagement makes me tired sometimes. I enjoy doing it and fail to realize that it may be tiresome until I start feeling it.
This self-defeating pattern affects me directly and indirectly. It affects me directly because I spend a lot of time on it whereas I can do so much more if I decide to do something else instead. Indirectly, it is becoming like a habit I cannot get away with. It is affecting my ability to concentrate on the most important tasks when I need to. Sometimes, the first thing I do after I open my laptop is to check my social media apps "just to see what is out there" but then end up spending an hour or two before I go back to doing something more important.
I would do better without being addicted to social networking sites because I would have more time and energy -- and better mind concentration -- for more important tasks for my academic and personal development.
Journal Entry 22.
IG: In what area of your life are you off course? (Question 1)
ME: My eating habit is terrible these days.
IG: Would you say more about that? (Expansion)
ME: When I was back in Korea, I used to have my breakfasts, lunches, snacks, dinners, and drinks in time and at the right amount. I made sure I ate vitamin-rich and fresh fruits and vegetables a lot. I also cooked as I wished. These days, my eating schedule is very irregular and I often choose "fast food" over better nutritious meals because of one of the following reasons: lack of time, getting exhausted, and being lazy to prepare something myself.
IG: What self-defeating thought patterns of your may have contributed to this situation? (Question 2)
ME: I probably do not remind myself that healthy eating is crucial for my overall physical condition and mistakenly think that other tasks of mine are more important than proper eating.
IG: Why do you think you have such thoughts although you do seem to realize you are doing something wrong? (Clarification)
ME: Everything I need to do is important: school, work, extracurricular activities. That, I think, sometimes gives me a false awareness that proper eating is not as important.
IG: That's good that you are actually aware of that! What different thoughts could you choose to get back on course to eat properly? (Question3)
ME: I could remind myself that none of the things I am doing right now will matter if I do not maintain a healthy lifestyle and remain healthy. I could also remind myself that proper and timely eating gives me more energy which I can utilize for everything I do on a daily basis.
IG: What self-defeating emotional patterns of yours may have contributed to this situation? (Question 4)
ME: I think I am addicted to social media.
IG: And it keeps you away from things you should do in time, including meals? (Reflection)
ME: Absolutely, when I am spending time in social networking sites I may not realize what time it is.
IG: But you should not despair. You are still strong and can work on this. What different emotion patters could you choose to get back on course?
ME: I could motivate myself to eat properly and in the right moments by reminding myself of nutritious and delicious salads I used to make. That would force me to think about meals more often because I love those salads so much. I can also think about installing an app to my Smartphone and/or my laptop that would remind me of meal times and make suggestions…