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15 Biggest Time Wasters in Life

11 December 2020

Life’s  Become Fast. With Today’s Clocks Ticking Faster Than Ever Make Sure You’re Dodging These Big Time Wasters.

Days, weeks and months just fly by, and although 2020 has been just about the longest year in living memory, it has still gone by in a flash. Time is so finite to us as individuals, even though we treat it like we have all the time in the world, so what do you spend your time on? Can you even make a list of what you got done today? If you’re finding that you’re so busy but nothing seems to get done, then this is the video for you. We’re going to point out ways you’re probably losing valuable time and gaining very little with these 15Biggest Time Wasters in Life.

Without wasting any more time, let’s dive in.

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Why waste time scrolling through a long read, when you can have it all quicker and through a more entertaining medium? Switch to the video version of this article:

With some time saved, let’s tick towards the 1st number in today’s list.

1

Checking Emails Like a Twitch

200 billion emails are sent a day, but not all emails are equal and require our immediate attention. In fact most could do without ever being opened and we would still be fine. One of the most distracting and concentration destructive sounds in adult life has got to be the notification sound or symbol you get when an email lands in your inbox.

What is most astounding is that despite the security that every waking email will arrive with a Ding we still habitually check our email on average 36 times an hour. That’s more than once every 2 minutes. It’s a wonder anyone gets anything…………sorry I was just checking my emails quick, I thought I heard a ding.

Anyway, you get the point. Answering emails immediately isn’t so urgent that you have to be checking them like a nervous twitch. Turn off the notifications, do your work and reply in a reasonable time frame.

2

Manually Updating Social Media

Most working adults spend on average 2hours on social media a day. That includes keeping up with Carey from High Schools kid’s school’s concert and seeing what your second cousin had for lunch.

If you want to still have a presence on Social media and limit your scroll time, then it’s time to use some new tools. Find a social media management tool that works for you. One of the most popular is Hootsuite. This allows you to load up and schedule all your various profiles and accounts across all social media platforms. You can get all your notifications in one place too.

It makes your time spent posting and keeping your online presence more focussed. Then when you do have time to spare you can scroll and enjoy it, rather than feeling the guilt of whiling away endless hours looking at nothing of any importance.

3

Not Delegating

Aren’t you proud of yourself that you went to college, pushed yourself for extra marks and did all that work experience just so that you can spend your valuable professional career comparing printers? Well if this is you then you are wasting your life and skills because you have failed at the biggest test of success: delegating.

You can’t expect your earnings to be in the millions if you’re doing the menial work that you can outsource to a remote PA for $5. It’s time to outsource so that you can spend your time doing tasks that matter. Failing to delegate disempowers and frustrates lower level team members who feel like you don’t value their skill. Plus it’s robbing you and the company of billing for your professional skills.

It’s time you write a To Do list and are honest about what you really need to supervise and what could be delegated. Anything that doesn’t cost more per hour to outsource as how much you bill for your time should be delegated to someone earning a lot less.

But let’s go back to those To Do lists, we’re not done there.

4

Unmanaged to Do Lists

We at Alux love getting To do lists done. But writing up a To do list doesn’t guarantee success. It’s what comes next that sets the successful apart.

If you want to be effective you need to make your daily To Do list short. It’s no problem if you need to word vomit absolutely everything you need to do onto a page first. In fact it’s a good idea so that you don’t sit thinking that you need to remember something. That’s also a waste of time. But from that list you need to create some order. Add some timelines and create an order of action. Each day tackle a few items. There is no point in tackling all of them at once or you’ll waste time, more on multitasking later.

It takes a strong concentration to complete a to do list with discipline. Here are 15 Ways To Build FOCUS.

5

Searching for Your Keys

Life’s too short to spend it looking for keys, and then shoes, and then your wallet, and now your gym access card, and now your keys again. The average American spends a year of their life looking for sh*t. Imagine if someone gave you an entire year free, what you would do with it? Well, if you just stop losing things, you will have that year.

Keeping track of things is actually really simple. It just starts with giving things a place. A hook for keys, a drawer for wallets, a place for your watch, your hairbrush, your shoes. Whatever it is that you lose frequently start with today. Then slowly in time give everything else a place in your home and office.

6

Multitasking

According to Guy Winch, a PhD and author, “when it comes to attention and productivity, our brains have a finite amount,”  In short, multi-tasking is a crock!

Multitasking makes everything take a lot longer, and it doesn’t guarantee the same quality as when our attention is focussed. Each time you switch gears between tasks you lose time and concentration changing from one to the next.

Don’t waste your own time, do one thing at a time, wrap it up and move onto the next thing. You’ll save a lot of time.

7

Being a Procrastinating Perfectionist

Failing to make a move because we don’t want to make a mistake or want it to turn out perfect isn’t just a result of common procrastination, it can be perfectionism in disguise.

If you struggle to stop researching and start something, or keep rehashing strategies to the point that nothing gets done, then you might be a professional procrastinating perfectionist.

The truth is that either way, in procrastinating for too long we lose control. Either the marketplace conditions will shift and decide for us, or we miss the opportunity. When we act we remain in control. Sometimes you will see that it didn’t have to be as perfect to achieve the same results, other times you will have time to perfect the details later. Either way, procrastination is a waste of time.

Find more on how to stop procrastinating in our video on the topic: 10 Ways to STOP Procrastinating

8

Meetings

Meetings are a snooze fest. BC aka Before-Covid, in the US, 25 million meetings were held daily. But studies indicated that most executive’s thought these meetings were unnecessary and a waste of money.

Productive meetings don’t need to stretch for more than 30minutes. Before the meeting, send out background documents so that everyone can contribute meaningfully. Outline the discussion points and then stay focussed. Where you don’t feel a meeting is necessary opt for an email or a call.

9

Not Saying No

Something so many of us forget is that we have the ability and freedom to say No. As grown ass adults we aren’t obliged to anyone to do anything we don’t want to. We’re not suggesting you become all about yourself all the time, we’re a caring community of Aluxers. But we draw a line when you end up saying yes to everything and have no time or energy to do the important things you need to do.

When someone asks you to guest host a podcast, or join a community forum or come to a fundraiser that you aren’t interested or equipped for, you should be able to say No thank you without any guilt. Not only are you ensuring you protect your own wellbeing, you also are looking after their interests by not taking on something you aren’t willing or able to do.

10

Avoidance Kills Time

Avoidance is part of human nature, we don’t like to face the inevitable, we don’t like to struggle, and we don’t like to graft. But when we do, we love the sweet sweet rewards. So why do we postpone that moment just for a bit of hard work, when it usually ends up not being as bad as we thought? Postponing it means that it might become harder, and you’ll find a million not important things to fill your time instead of doing the one thing you need to.

Most motivation coaches encourage their followers to always tackle the tough stuff first. And it makes sense. Start on it first when you’re more powered up. Finishing the task gives you a boost of confidence. And you don’t need to worry about it while you get going on the easy things.

11

Comparing Yourself to Others

Comparing yourself is the biggest waste of time. Not only is it impossible for any one person to be comparable to another because no single person has had the same lived experience as another, it also doesn’t get us anywhere.

When you are focussing on comparisons, you’re taking the focus off your own goal and mission in life. It doesn’t matter where someone else is in their career, they could be different to where you are in your family, or your relationships or your confidence. There are too many aspects that make up a person for it to be worth comparing yourself to the parts you know about them. Each of us has our own struggles, as well as things that come naturally and easy to us. Stick in your own lane and move yourself ahead.

Keep reading because we’ll give you one habit to stop today and save yourself from total time assassination.

12

Waiting

Spending your valuable time in a queue or stuck in traffic is totally counterproductive. Often with a proper stock take of your time and a little planning you can reduce or eliminate the time you spend waiting. Now that many of us have spent a substantial amount of time working from home and shopping online this year, it has become even more evident how much time was wasted in traffic and doing errands that can now be done online.

Asking your boss for a flexible start and end time will also allow you to commute to work in the off-peak times so that you spend less time in traffic and more time doing what you enjoy.

13

Going Into Shops

Covid lockdown has forced the last remaining in-person shopper to migrate online out of necessity. For most of us, it’s a no-brainer that going to a shop in person is a total waste of time. Driving, parking, browsing, queuing all drive up the time it takes to just “pop in” and get something quickly.

Having grocery stores on every corner means we don’t plan, and we just stop in for a few items every day after work. But when you look at how much time…and snacks… that adds to your schedule and bills, it’s scary. It’s better to plan your shop, order online and make-do with what you’ve got. You will save money, time and snack less.

14

Binge Watching

Nothing beats a binge fest when you need a weekend on the couch. But Binge watching is a total time waster if you habitually binge any new series you get into. We live in a generation that never has time or money to take a holiday or visit their friends but always is up to speed with the latest streaming release and knows all the best places on Uber Eats.

Take a realistic look at how much time you spend clicking Next Episode every night instead of getting up and doing something more worthwhile. Perhaps you will realise you actually DO have time for the things you say you don’t.

15

Be Proactive Not Reactive in Doing Errands

Errands take a massive chunk of change from adult life. But that doesn’t have to be the case. When you leave your errands to the last minute they take up a ton more time than they have to. If you leave filing your taxes so late that you literally have to take a day off work to stand in a queue and file them manually, then you f*cked up. Or if you waited too long to renew your driver’s licence that you have to go in and retake the whole test, then you’re doing it wrong. Instead of reacting to late letters and summons because you keep putting off your errands start being proactive about them.

Have your bills ready to pay or a licence to renew in your bag. Then when you are headed in that direction you can do it, instead of turning it into a whole trip just for that. When you finish something in your kitchen add it to your shopping list. Having to run out for one ingredient is a total waste of time. And ain’t nobody got time for that.

Question

What is the biggest time waster in your life?