Twenty-Two Time Wasters to Avoid

Just since I sat down to write this short Tip Sheet, I have had numerous interruptions and possible time wasters. There is a guy across the room talking on the phone to his wife, talking about my schedule. “Should I go over and correct him on my day off?” “No, I have to concentrate on this and not let that be an interruption.” My phone has buzzed three times with messages from my wife, from our Band Corban, and from one of our team leaders in Ecuador.   I’m sitting somewhere in Florida trying to complete what I set out to complete – this Tip Sheet.

In the book, Organize Yourself by Ronni Eisenberg with Kate Kelley there is a chapter dedicated to this subject. They say, “Letting something or someone else waste your time means losing control of your time… For each of the following time wasters, there is an obvious solution. In the list below, how often do you recognize yourself?” 

  • Not having a plan; lacking direction
  • Failing to set priorities; trapped by indecision
  • Unable to say no
  • Attempting to take on more tasks than you can possibly handle
  • Failure to delegate; trying to do everything yourself
  • Scheduling activities so that you have too much or too little time for something
  • Putting off something that should be done today
  • Focusing on how busy you are; avoiding priority work
  • Suffering from personal disorganization; unable to find things because of clutter
  • Jumping from one activity, project, item to the next instead of getting one thing done
  • Leaving tasks unfinished and having to rethink what you were doing in order to finish up
  • Getting bogged down by the details instead of keeping your goals in mind
  • Starting a project without having enough information
  • Lacking skills to accomplish what you intend (e.g., having to grope with the computer because your note familiar with the program you need to use)
  • Being kept waiting
  • Being interrupted by the telephone (or cell)
  • Socializing during time you set aside for projects
  • Being interrupted by visitors who drop in – and you let them take control
  • Not getting to the point in a conversation; not saying what you mean
  • Holding a meeting without an agenda
  • Not using your commuting or travel time wisely
  • Watching television when you had planned to do something else

Just since I wrote this list, I had 3 more interruptions. However, I ignored the person that came to the door (someone else attended to them), I ignored the buzzing of my phone (I will get to that when I am done here) and I looked away from the snacks across the room that were calling me to take a break :).

Stay away from these time wasters and interruptions and you will get more done.

All italics are direct quotes from the book – Organize Yourself by Ronni Eisenberg with Kate Kelley.

Rich Brown/2016


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