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How We Waste Time at Work

How We Waste Time at Work

Annie Tucker Morgan | Divine Caroline

Waste Not, Want Not

If you’re among the many Americans who aren’t fulfilled by their jobs, remember that only you can change your situation. Whether that means actively seeking out more stimulating tasks in your current role or changing careers altogether is an individual decision, but making small adjustments can mean the difference between dreading going to work every morning and actually enjoying your day-to-day.

First, take baby steps—make a concerted effort to set manageable goals regarding what you hope to accomplish each workday. Create a to-do list when you arrive at work; then make a pledge to yourself that you’ll work uninterrupted for a predetermined amount of time, be it one hour or half the day. Don’t open any non-work-related Internet windows or check personal email; rather than succumbing to these distractions, tackle your most difficult projects first. When you’ve reached the end of that time period, see how many tasks you’re able to check off—and use that as a gauge to adjust your list as needed in the days following.

Second, make it a priority to organize your workspace—even if you have to sacrifice a lunch hour or two to get it done. Sanitize your desk, keyboard, phone, and other work surfaces, file loose papers, and display your to-do list prominently.

Finally, establish your own rewards system if you believe your employer doesn’t appreciate your efforts enough. For example, if you complete your to-do list every day for an entire week, treat yourself to a delicious dinner, a bottle of good wine, or even just a long bath. After all, taking time to pat yourself on the back for your hard work is just as important as receiving accolades from your colleagues.

Precious Time

Millions of Americans are fortunate to work for companies that don’t put them under a microscope and trust that their time-management skills are well developed. But when studies like AOL and Salary.com’s expose the startling degree to which many workers are misallocating their business hours, it’s time for employers and employees alike to assess and revamp their professional habits. Peter Gibbons may have ended up being promoted in Office Space after he owned up to his laziness, but that’s what’s known in the film world as suspension of disbelief.

This article was originally published on DivineCaroline.com.

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Featured Author: DivineCaroline
At DivineCaroline, you’ll be spending time with women who embrace the fact that life isn’t always easy or beautiful or fair. Our dream is to give you a place to come together to express yourselves. What brings you joy. What breaks your heart. Makes you giggle. What pisses you off. Confuses you. Entertains you. What keeps you strong. Check them out here!


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