You’re Wasting Half Your Day and What to Do About It

Wasting Time Button

“I don’t have time.”

It’s a common refrain. (And excuse…)

Yet, you control what you do with your time each day.

To get more done, you need to cut out the frivolous activities eating up your time.

Are you wasting half of your day?

Where Are You Spending Your Time?

Before you say you don’t have enough time, take a hard look at where you are actually spending it.

Before you say that you can’t possibly get your work done, make sure you are making good use of your day.

“We all have the same time in the day, it’s how you spend it that makes all the difference.” (Tweet Quote)

Where are you spending your time?

Do you get to work and start a time-wasting morning routine that eats up most of the AM?

One thing leads to another, and by the time you get back to your desk from getting  morning coffee…  it’s almost lunch time.

Your afternoon follows a similar pattern.

After an extended lunch, you have only a short time to dig into your email before it’s time to go home.

What happened to your work day?

It was gone before it started.

Just a Little Time Wasted

It may seem like just a few minutes wasted here and a few more there.

But, when you add it up, you might scare yourself.

Minutes compound into hours. And before you know it, you have wasted half of your work day.

Here Are Some Ways You Are Wasting Your Day and What to Do About It:

  • Arriving Late – Are you the one always arriving twenty minutes into the work day? It may not seem like much, but the rest of the office is off and running by the time you are rushing in the door late. Tip: Try leaving even 15 minutes earlier for work. Time-shifting your commute even a small amount can pay huge time dividends. Some people can save an hour a day by adjusting their commute.
  • The Weekend Recap – Avoid spending an hour recapping your weekend with everyone else in the office. You don’t have to be anti-social, but how many times do you need to recount your weekend like it was a TV reality show. Tip: Avoid this time trap and those that must tell you every single detail of their weekend.
  • Idle Time – You will have down time during the day. Unexpected wait times, delays, and more. Getting a moment to relax is good, however it’s not productive when you end up wasting two hours in idle wait time. Tip: Always have some work with you to keep you productive. It can be as simple as having reading material to catch up on via your phone or tablet.
  • Long Lunch – Don’t fall for the long lunch trap. Going out to lunch can be a great way to decompress and build relationships with others. However, if it regularly turns into an hour and half adventure, it is probably not worth the time. Tip: Bring your lunch to recover some of your midday. If you want to be social, start a lunch group to hang out or even to share skills and topics.
  • The Morning Shuffle – Is the beginning of your office’s workday total chaos and full of noise? There is a co-worker who walks around the office the first two hours of the day yelling hello and interrupting everyone trying to get their day started. Tip: Avoid the morning chaos by finding a quiet place to work until things settle in. Or shut your door, if you must.
  • Email Game – Unless you are a customer service rep, then email is not your job. Tip: Get out of your inbox so that you can get your real work done. Add tasks to your todo list to help you stay out of your email, and minimize the number of times you check it per day.
  • Web Surfing – Web surfing is not a competitive sport. As well, you don’t need to check the news multiple times a day. Tip: Stay off the Internet to avoid endless surfing sessions.
  • Complaining – Complaining doesn’t get anything done. If you’re not happy, do something about it. Tip: Take action about what is bothering you. It always accomplishes more than just whining.

Reclaim Your Day

If you were being honest, how much of your workday is wasted?

10, 20, 30, 50%?

How much time do you waste telling tall tales from your weekend?

Or at the water cooler complaining about the latest corporate policy change?

Or simply wasting time on email or the Internet?

Stop the time wasters, and get your work done.

And of course, then get out of the office and enjoy life!

Question: How much of your day are you wasting? What activities do you need to cut out? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

13 thoughts on “You’re Wasting Half Your Day and What to Do About It

  1. We are all given the same amount of time in a 24-hr cycle; truth for the ages. A day is like an empty jar which we all need to decide how to fill or the after-tax dollar we all have to decide on how best to use/spend it. Thanks for sharing/posting.

  2. These are some great tips Craig. One thing that can improve your productivity and reduce wasted time is to pick three things to accomplish the night before. Plan to accomplish these three things before you tackle anything thing else and you will be more productive.

  3. DELEGATE DELEGATE DELEGATE! Check out a virtual solution like RemSource, who can take so much of your daily workflow off your shoulders so you can focus on what you do best!

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