How to Pack, According to a Master Procrastinator

Written by jackreiser September 6, 2022

Ciao! If you’re like me, you sometimes procrastinate when given projects, reading, research, or other assignments. You may put off learning Italian until three weeks before you spend three months in the country itself. Before my first international trip, I do not want to make room for mistakes. To pack correctly and make the most of my trip, here are several ways I have overcome my procrastinating nature before I leave for CIMBA.

RESEARCH. Reach out to ALL trustworthy resources you have. Like me, if it’s your first international trip, you won’t know what to expect. If you reach out to those you trust, anxieties will ease, and you will have a better idea of what to expect. If you find yourself lacking in the department of knowing people who have traveled to Italy, there are other options. Countless travel vloggers dwell within the vast landscape of YouTube, and I’ve found that Wolter’s World rises above the rest. Knowledge is power. Wield that power to prevent overthinking, procrastination and inactivity when preparing for your trip.

PLAN. Pack with a plan, according to where you want to go while at CIMBA. We have several travel periods to explore Europe and packing according to those travel plans is essential. You can plan in addition with research by finding average yearly temperatures, climates, local fashion norms, and clothing or baggage restrictions for attractions. For the fall, the Veneto region ranges from high seventies to low thirties, with November being the rainiest month of the year. In accordance with these temperatures and weather patterns, I have packed clothes that easily match and layer. Conglomerate the ideas of research and forming a plan to best pack and prevent procrastination.

ACT. Don’t just think. I find some of my time where my mind entertains ideas of how to pack, what to pack, how much to pack, and reaching out to friends who have studied abroad to ask what they packed. Instead of just sitting and thinking, DO. If you think actively by pulling out the clothes or supplies you might take, it helps. You won’t take everything you pull out. That’s okay. Just as writing is rewriting, packing is repacking. I’ve reorganized my t-shirt pile half a dozen times. The mind works best while tackling a task, therefore action prevents procrastination from taking over.

ORGANIZE. Your mind will fail you. I have tried several times to organize my clothes in my head. I don’t recommend that. Instead, I’ve laid my clothes out on a table, organized by season or type, so that I can envision all that I am bringing. In addition to visually organizing, I recommend a written list. It’s easy to write out everything on an inventory checklist, and the internet offers templates of packing lists. The more organized you are, the less stress you will have.

Even though I have no doubt that nervousness will still set in, I have found that remaining calm by taking breaks throughout the packing process helps ease tension. I’ve gone on quick runs, exercised, or taken naps. Do what you need to do to work effectively. Research according to the destination. Plan according to research. Act on that knowledge and information. Organize the action. These four principles have prevented a master procrastinator from packing the night before a three-month journey.