Easy time-wasting habits to avoid

Saying “Yes“ to everything

Don't fall into the trap of helping everyone else before you attend to your own tasks. There's nothing wrong with saying "no".

Letting negativity fester

There may be difficulties in your job – tough tasks, disruptive colleagues, a challenging leader - but it doesn’t do any good if you dwell on it. Either tackle the problem head on or put it out of your mind.

Constantly checking emails

Keeping your inbox open and replying to emails within seconds is noble - but misguided. Productivity gurus like Tim Ferriss set up designated times of the day to check their mail and that’s a good plan, because you’re only wasting your time scanning your inbox constantly. (Unless, of course, your job is to answer mails and nothing else).

Losing time on social media

Trust us on this one: delete social media from your work phone if you want to get more done. You can thank us later.

Getting sidetracked

There’s nothing wrong with idly browsing the web when you’re low on energy. We’re all allowed a break. But give yourself a designated time to get back to work - and stick to that time.

Explaining oneself

If you’re having to explain everything you’re doing and why you’re doing it, chances are you’re not meeting the brief - or you’re in an environment that’s smothering you.

Waiting for things to happen

Is time passing you by? Are you waiting at your desk for an email to come back, or feedback on a project? Well, unless you go and rustle that person awake, get on with something impromptu. It’s in these moments that magic often happens.


Fancy yourself a dab hand at multitasking? All you’re doing is severing your focus and depleting your energy reserves. Take tasks one at a time. You’ll execute more productively, and the quality will be better too.

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