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Why You Should Waste Time Today

Posted June 30, 2013 by Marcy Twete in Life After Five

I’ve never liked the notion of “wasted” time. What does that really mean, actually? Is time ever really “wasted”? That’s when I came across the quote from John Lennon above and I just love it.

The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.

The same notion applies to general productivity. The world’s foremost expert on strengths based leadership, Marcus Buckingham, says in his book Go, Put Your Strengths to Work that one of the best ways to discover whether or not you love what you’re doing is to examine whether or not you lose track of time while doing it. If you find yourself constantly saying, “Oh my gosh, it’s already 4:00pm! The day has just flown by,” chances are you’re actually quite happy in your job. People who lose track of what they’re doing are invested and passionate about their work, so much so they forget to look at a clock.

To set yourself up for success in the realm of productivity today, I recommend you combine these two concepts of wasting time and losing track of it. Try one of these suggestions:

  1. Find the hobby you stopped doing years ago, and start doing it again. Perhaps you once loved cross stitching or scrapbooking or stamp collecting. Why did you stop doing it? Because somewhere along the line, you decided it was a “waste of time.” Pick it back up today and allow yourself to get lost in it!
  2. Try something new you’ve always wanted to try. Last weekend, my husband and I tried stand up paddle boarding for the first time. I spent a lot of time falling off the stand up paddle board, so one might say that time was wasted because I didn’t really accomplish anything. But it was FUN! And that’s what matters sometimes more than wasted time.
  3. Exercise those guilty pleasures. I love love love reality television – the seedier and more unrealistic, the better. And when my batteries need recharging, a Sunday on the couch watching “Real World/Road Rules Challenge” always does the trick! Whether your guilty pleasure is TV or romance novels, take some time and get lost in the guilty pleasure of it all.

So go ahead, I give you permission, “waste” some time today. And have fun doing it!

About the Author

Marcy Twete

Marcy Twete is a career fundraiser turned corporate responsibility executive, a career and networking expert and the author of the book "You Know Everybody! A Career Girl’s Guide to Building a Network That Works."