Identify And Avoid Common Time Wasters
Time wasters affect everybody, not just the work-at-home mom or the average employee. For instance, a study conducted by Finkel found that 30% of business owners’ (including their key executives’) work week accounted for low-value, time-wasting activities. That’s about 21.8 wasted hours per week.
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How do you identify and eliminate these time wasters? In this article, we’ll look into this and establish how to use time more productively.
How to identify time wasters
Identify pain points within your schedule
You have to look at your schedule and locate entries that create annoyance or frustration. These could be specific assignments, projects, events, meetings and tasks, among others.
Once you locate a troublesome entry within your schedule, ask yourself what’s really stopping you from finishing the assignment or completing the task? Are you just procrastinating? Is there a time waster at play? Write this down in a notebook.
Reflect on the most common time wasters
Your schedule may look crazy because of a lot of time wasters which consume a huge portion of your day. Sometimes, it’s your routine or habit that’s causing the problem. Your daily schedule can be suffering from these typical time wasters:
- Gossiping with friends and colleagues,
- Constantly checking your smartphone for texts, emails, and social media notifications,
- Surfing through your email inbox with no particular purpose,
- Playing games on your mobile phone, tablet, or laptop,
- Reading click-bait content,
- Watching tv shows or movies, and
- Surfing the net mindlessly including snooping on forums.
Again, be mindful throughout the entire day and write down the trivial things (or tasks) you believe are consuming an unnecessary amount of your time.
- Identify if the task is aligned with your objectives
Are the activities you’re doing aligned with goals? If you have a goal to finish a project, is the task you’re doing necessary to complete your objectives? If a huge portion of your schedule is consumed by tasks not related to your goal, then they are time waster. Write these useless, minor activities in your notebook and make sure you address them.
Learning to identify time wasters is an easy task. You simply have to be mindful of the things you do throughout the week. Writing them down is an effective way of determining unwanted activities. Taking a productivity class can also be beneficial.