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Stop Wasting Time- Brilliant Strategies That Work!
We all know it is important to stop wasting time on things that would not matter eventually, but we all are culprits of prioritizing wrong things. Human nature, ain’t it?
Let’s take a small break to see my Instagram account, or surf the internet in between the chaotic work, this is how it begins. It’s already an hour and you are still on the phone. Instagram, Facebook, youtube, Pinterest, a few minutes hours of surfing.
Are you among the ones who can’t retaliate against the urge to use your phone? Well, you must go through the complete article to work effectively. It is nothing new that we all know using social media just to surf for some time is a waste of time, but IT IS WHT IT IS, right? Out guilty pleasure!
How To Stop Wasting Time?
Before getting started, let me take you through my own ride through social media. I had pretty much the same habit. We all just read simple text on the internet and then through that, we automatically have the urge to check social media for texts or likes, but then, it does not stop here. Even after the task you cam for is completed, you still find yourself on the phone. Just one reel and I will keep the phone, sounds familiar?
We always find ourselves wasting time on completely useless things. We often waste time when we have something important and deadlines to achieves, but no, that doesn’t help.
Here are few things you can try to stop wasting time, just be consistent and patients and notice the changes steadily.
1. Do something you love
The most effective and useful way to stop wasting time is to work on something you really like. It may be some habits that you developed or some hobbies you had previously that you cannot follow because of lack of time (well, there’s no lack of time, you just waste it, to be honest). You do not have to go after things that you love as a full-time job.
Why not pursue your long-forgotten hobbies that can help you grow or that do not involve you surfing on your phone now and then. Did you dream of dancing like a pro or playing guitar as a teenager? You are not late, there is plenty of time to do, just start today.
When you do something that you love entirely it serves as a catalyst to ignore certain things that you often regret wasting time on. Working on something you love kind of serves as an adrenaline rush. This helps you flush out unwanted distractions.
2. Heard of a 2-minute rule?
If you have read Getting Things Done by David Allen, you might be familiar with the two-minute rule, if not, let me take you through it.
As per this rule, if you come across any task that requires only 2 minutes to complete, finish it then and there without having any thoughts of postponing the task.
This is because when you recall the task after some time, then recalling the needed areas and then completing the tasks take 5 minutes more instead of 2 minutes. In some cases, we might even forget the task deeded to be completed. For this reason alone, it is important to follow the 2-minute rule.
If you have just taken a break but there is an email waiting for a reply, just do it immediately, do not wait for getting back to work. Stop wasting time on procrastinating, just do it right away!
3. Focus On One Task Itself
Many people have a habit of keeping multiple tabs open while they are doing homework on their laptops. Most of the time you do not even need all the browsers, you just let them be so that you can open them later and it distracts you. So you are working on a protected but there’s another tab where you have played a Selena Gomez song? As good as she sounds, it will just distract you.
We are too lazy to close all the tabs. You might have the Facebook tab opened just after your project. One notification from Facebook and Voila! you are there! Once you open Facebook, can you stop before an hour? I bet you cannot.
It is better to open a single tab you are working on and just focus on that instead of binge opening 20 at a time. Learn to prioritize your task, once you are on that, there’s no going back.
4. Set an end time to take a break
Whenever you complete a hectic task, you often feel like taking a break. See, the problem is not in taking a break, the problem is how long do you take a break for? Mostly you will b able to complete the given task in about an hour and then you will feel like taking a 5-minute break, but will it end in 5-minutes? Guilty? YES!
Many times you would take a break for an hour for completing a task that required half an hour. Been there, done that. haven’t we?
The best thing to avoid this setting an alarm to end your break. If you have decided to take a 5-minute break, the break should end in 5 minutes. Even if you have learned a new gossip to be shared, just 5 minutes and not more.
Having various plans in a day can help end your breaks rather than complete all the work and wasting time for no reason.
5. Reduce distractions in different ways
Try to look for ways through which you can reduce the distractions. You may use a closed room for work or use headphones or maybe a DND board? The more you let people come around you, the more you are likely to pay attention to what they have to say. This leads to gossips and random small conversations. Sometimes it starts with a random name and there you are! You just go on and on and water hours talking. This might have happened to you in hostels with your roomies, right? Same miles to your work too.
People often speak loudly, answer calls, ask unnecessary questions, crack lame jokes, drop a bottle, and more. Try to create your own environment where you do not have to go through such distractions and you will see so much productivity.
This does not mean you have to isolate yourself from the world or live in an isolated cell-like a prisoner. But as long as you are working on an important task, try to keep yourself away from the commotion. Try to access empty rooms. Use your earphones without music to stop people from bothering you and asking unnecessary questions.
There is nothing wrong with asking people to stop disturbing you for some time. Like you can set a DND board outside the office for 3-4 hours when you feel the most productive. Do what suits you the best. Working among so many distractions is some as people talking to each other in between the meetings or seminars, you get nothing out of it.
6. Don’t wait for exact half-an-hour- or an hour to begin
As childish and foolish as it seems, we all are guilty here. That is how our brain functions most of the time. If I opened my laptop at 7:24 Am, I would begin my work at 7:30 only, before that, I will watch youtube videos, guilty again?
You just start doing something else and then again it’s 7:36 AM or something, we just decide to start our work at 8 AM. We all have done that so many times that God knows how many hours we have wasted doing that.
It is really a bad idea to postpone work because it’s few minutes late or a few minutes early, there’s no sense. Know that the first best time to begin work was in the past, the second-best time to complete the work is right now!
7. Log out of unnecessary distractions
We always keep all our social media accounts like youtube, quora, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, etc open. There is one notification and we are already on the app or website. Due to advancements in machine learning, your social media accounts are familiar with your likes and dislikes.
For example, you might love watching Lucifer, or TVD. You just open you’ve to search for a useful work-related video but you end up watching interviews of Tom or Paul Welsey or Ian Somerhalder, isn’t it?
Youtube very well knows what kind of videos you like watching, they will always be on the homepage. But as soon as you log out, or open an incognito browser, they wouldn’t;t recognize you. Try to control your temptation. If you do not want to practice logging in and logging out now and then, try using another tab.
8.Practice time blocking
Try to work within the time slots as much as possible. This is called time blocking. For example, you may set an hour of your day to impr0ve certain areas, while another hour for learning new things. You may spend the next hour checking important mails by clients and so on based on your work ethic and area.
When you have all the To-do tasks sorted in time slots, you tend to make better progress overall. When you do no follow such methods, you just end up wandering among different tasks without knowing in which direction to go.
For small business owners, this strategy is strongly recommended to avoid getting into different directions and end up wasting time.
9. Is It Worth Yout Time
You cannot simply start giving time to a task without knowing it is important to you or not or without understanding whether the task is worth your time. When you start making such mistakes, it leads to lacking a will to finish the task. Know why you started.
If you do not have a purpose behind completing your task, there is no point in doing it as eventually you will get bored and leave it. Do not make such mistakes, write down the task and decide whether they are worth completing or not if they are? write down the reason behind it to get motivated and started at the very moment.
10. Use Websites Instead Of Apps
Basically, when you have social media apps on your phone like Pinterest, Instagram, youtube, quora, etc. the usage becomes highly user-friendly and distracting. Everything seems so smooth that you end up spending hours on it. Apps are always addicting as they sent different notifications which take you there.
Most of the apps you use also have websites. You can use the website’s version of Facebook, youtube, Instagram, etc. Using a website requires slightly more effort than using apps. It is typical human nature, we do not love sending extra effort on anything, you can use this to your advantage to get things done and stop your urge.
11. Know Your Goals
You need to focus on your big-time goals and stop wasting time. This applies to both your work life and home life. For example, you can find a better balance between the two. Try to be more involved with your child or try exercising more. Once you know your goals on a big-time basis-you can work accordingly to achieve them over time.
12. Keep Track Of Your Time
It might seem difficult in the beginning but every good thing takes time, isn’t it? Note down how much time you are really taking on doing certain tasks and see if you can do better or complete them in less time. For example, the time required to do your bed, laundry, breakfast, etc.
Most people spend few minutes on their phone before eating breakfast, try to stop wasting time on their phone, and eat breakfast early. You can learn how to stop wasting time and how to manage time with small tasks. Do not underestimate such tasks and look for a bigger picture. Once you know how to manage time, you will be able to apply the same to bigger tasks as well.
13. Prioritize your tasks daily
You must know about 4 to-dos, these are:
- Urgent and important tasks to be completed
- Not urgent but important tasks
- Urgent but not important
- Neither important nor urgent
Once you can figure out these 4 points, you can categorize your daily tasks into these categories. Tru to complete the first category first, and then begin with the second one and so on. You will feel so overwhelmed once you finish all these. It feels great to be in that position before sleeping with a calm mind.
14. Try to complete the hard stuff first
Here is the trick to stop wasting time, try to complete the hard tasks first and then go for the easier ones. Once you start doing this, the bigger tasks get over in the morning itself which means you do not have to carry forward the stress of completing greater tasks for the whole day.
You will feel much lighter and satisfied after practicing this stick to stop wasting time. Also, it is easy to do bigger tasks in the morning when you are highly productive.
15. Schedule Good stuff too
The whole point of this article on stop wasting time is not about only working hard and being predictive without giving your body and mind a break from the havoc. It means you have to finish everything on time without wasting any of it so that you can put that valuable time of yours into something you love. It might be going for a vacation with your family or hanging out with good old friends or anything you feel like doing.
Good times include exercise, sacks, recreation, breaks, and social media too if you love surfing.
Once you stop wasting time, it highly helps you evolve and plays a huge role in personal development. These were the 15 most useful tips on how to stop wasting time. Know that all the tips might not be useful for every individual out there. Some might work really week for you while others do not.