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Optimal Productivity: Wasted Time or Time Well Spent?

Posted by Brian Spence on Nov 8, 2017 8:00:00 AM

ProductivityPeople are often taught that they need to be busy all the time to be productive. The more time spent on work, the more productive you have been, right? What if wasted time, though, is really time well spent? Not all wasted time is created equal. Some wasted time is just that, while others is not. Instead, it is time well spent. If you are wondering if you are wasting time to avoid completing a task or if you are really contributing to your productivity by focusing on non-work activities, there are three questions you can ask yourself.

Did It Bring Happiness?

Often, people waste time by randomly browsing the Internet, not really looking for anything in particular but simply wanting to avoid completing something they know they need to get done. This likely will not bring happiness. Taking a break from work to walk around a nearby park, though, might make you feel happier and more energized. Consider how much the activity is contributing to your overall happiness.

Did It Fulfill a Non-Work Goal or Priority?

Taking a break from work to fulfill a non-work goal can be time well-spent. Maybe you want to learn more about another country or you have a goal to exercise at least half an hour a day. Something that allows you to fulfill your goal might on the surface feel like wasted time but may remind you that you can accomplish difficult things, allowing you to better focus on a large workload.

Did It Draw You Closer to Those You Love?

It is important to engage in activities that draw you closer to your family and friends. Even just playing a board game with your kids or going out to lunch with a friend can be a highly fulfilling experience.

When you allow yourself to be distracted by “wasted time” that is really time well spent, you may also find that you are able to increase your productivity. As you are happier, getting a difficult task done may not feel as overwhelming.

Interested in learning more about this and related topics? Visit the Productivity section of our blog.


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