Richard Maun – Where Do You Waste Time?

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Where Do You Waste Time?

13 April 2014

In a world of rush-rush and hurry-scurry we can think that we are being super productive, when in fact we are gripped by fatigue, or out of sync with our daily rhythms. We tend to have a stress load on us from the moment we wake to the moment we sleep, which can mean that although we think we are thinking we are in fact simply deploying archaic get-us-through-the-day behaviours and are not really taking time to consider what is the most effective way for us to work.

The office world likes us to be at our desk for 9.00am take a decent lunch hour at 1.00pm and then toddle off home at 5.30pm. Of course we all do this each day …and we never skip lunch, work late or check emails before our morning ablutions. However, this is artificial time and pays no attention to when we like to work. For example, my own pattern is to mooch about post-school run and then settle down about 10.30 stopping only for something to eat at 12.00 for half an hour and then mooching again until 3.00 when I settle down to my keyboard and work diligently to 8.00pm.

My actual hours will vary from day to day, but the essence is still the same….I hate early starts and am more productive when I work late.

Instead of wasting time with this pseudo-work I am increasingly noticing my own bad habits and replacing them with the following options:

1. Bass guitar practice. Great fun and a good for stress relief!
2. Café lunch. Taking Mrs M out for brunch is a great way to replace wasted work time with fresh air and meaty snacks in our favourite local café.
3. Book reading. I like books and have decided that rather than waste time at my desk I will instead ‘waste’ the same amount of time reading my current bedside book. Winnie the Pooh has never been so much fun!
4. Sales meetings. Nobody builds a business my sitting in front of a screen all day, so I tend to book meetings for the morning, post school run, when I know I would just be at my desk and faffing.

We all kid ourselves that we are being productive, when in fact we secretly know we are just watching one more cat in a hat on YouTube, or re-typing the same report three times because we can’t think clearly how it should go. This week I invite you to be honest and to make different use of your time and perhaps re-contract with your line manager to make sure your hours at work are more closely tailored for your own styles and rhythms.

And if you want to meet for breakfast or brunch do let me know! I’m happy to swap faffing for friendship….and bacon and eggs! Yum!

Next week: Time For Treats!


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