Apr 12, 2015
I'd discuss how my procrastination habits prevented me from pursuing my interests for a long time, until I actively tried to work around my habits. I tried a variety of methods, none of which were successful at first, but kept a log of my attempts on an excel sheet and wrote down what worked and what didn't. Eventually, I realized that I was subconsciously scared of performing tasks that I assigned high priority, so I worked around that by thinking of my most important tasks as low priority and starting to treat them as forms of "fun" as opposed to subconsciously thinking of them as "work." In terms of how it affected me, I would say that it made me realize that problems I might think are easy to overcome might be extremely difficult for others to overcome, which has made me a lot more understanding of others' sufferings.

Does this work?


2+ Year Member
Jul 1, 2015
Is procrastination really enough of a challenge that will help you stand out? It's basically a way of life to all students, especially undergraduates. It doesn't have to be personal, but I think you can dig deeper.

Some examples I've seen posters mention: Death, Poverty, Weight Loss, Domestic Violence, etc.
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tea guzzling traveler

5+ Year Member
Oct 8, 2014
Medical Student (Accepted)
Also fairly risky because you bring up a potential thing that would prevent you from succeeding in medical school if your habits resurfaced.


2+ Year Member
Jul 20, 2014
Is procrastination the most challenging thing you encountered in your 20 years of life? : /
It doesn't have to be adversity. It can be an intellectual challenge like in research, a challenge in dealing with people of different cultures, or maybe a challenge in adapting to a new environment (highschool to college transition, entitled life to work environment, moving to a different state/country, etc).


2+ Year Member
Jun 4, 2015
Medical Student (Accepted)
Procrastination is a huge challenge. It can negatively affect all aspects of your life. However, it just isn't compelling enough for a secondary. So while your challenge is a "real" one, it isn't necessarily the one to write about when your peers are writing about wrangling sharks and skydiving off of K2.
Jan 26, 2015
MD/PhD Student
I think this could work fine, as long as the prompt is "tell us about a challenge you have faced" and not "what was your greatest challenge." The adcom SDNers have repeatedly said that challenge essays do not have to be about the time you single-handedly rescued five babies from drowning as all of your grandparents were dying in the hospital. It's more about how you handled the challenge than what the challenge actually was.

However, I would be very careful with this part: "In terms of how it affected me, I would say that it made me realize that problems I might think are easy to overcome might be extremely difficult for others to overcome, which has made me a lot more understanding of others' sufferings."

I totally understand where you are coming from, but the way that you worded it here rankles of superiority. It might read better if you say "It made me realize that everyone has different strengths, and the challenges I face may not be the same ones that others face."


5+ Year Member
Aug 8, 2014
Medical Student
it's a bad idea to even mention procrastination. this is simply a bad habit and doesn't reflect well on you.
Yea, I have to agree with this.

I have written about my illness.

I understand that the adversity prompt can be a total pain to write for people who have been raised by mom and dad with no problems in life up until this point.

But... even many of those people have some kind of challenge they have had to face.

But god.. there has to be even a few people out of those that literally have never faced a real challenge. I wonder what they do with this prompt?
Apr 2, 2015
Topeka, Kansas
Medical Student (Accepted)
I did mine on moving for a job under a tight deadline. Its so minor. I just stressed how I relied on support from friends and family and how I micromanaged/analyzed things like apartment hunting in a very short period of time. I think you should pick something thrust upon you (ie: 0 fault of your own) so it doesn't show any level of incompetence that might be perceived as a red flag.
Oct 25, 2014
Do it, procrastination is the biggest challenge I've faced in life, and it leads to regret, depression spirals etc.. I think some adcoms will be able to relate. The mian thing will be execution, but that's always the case I think. If this is something you can write about, then go for it.
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