Saturday, January 22, 2011

How to Waste Less Time

Most people waste an enormous amount of time - have you noticed? When was the last time you killed time on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, or checking your email? People in modern society suffer from an information overload.

The solution?

A low information diet.

This doesn't mean you'll become ignorant or an ill-informed citizen. You're simply moderating your intake of information to 'need-to-know' only.


Stop watching the news and reading the newspapers - wait! - This won't mean you won't know what's going on, but just glance at headlines as you pass the papers and try asking your co-workers, colleagues, waiters, or whoever, what's big news in the world that day. Let the news junkies sift and distill for you.

EDIT: I originally posted this in the comments, but decided to include it in the main body of the post. This will work for problem websites as well as email: Though it says Mac, a Windows version is also available.

Now, it's time to attack your cellphone and your email. Settle down, it will be OK - everyone got along peachily before they came around and I am not advising you cut them out entirely, just moderate them. How?

Go into your email settings and create an autoresponse (sometimes called a vacation response) that tells people the two times of the day that you check your email - and that's all you will do! Do not make one of the times first thing in the morning - give yourself some time to be productive before you check your email. In your auto-response, give the times you check them and explain that you're doing this to increase your efficiency and effectiveness and, if it's truly urgent they can call you at <your phone number here.>

People can get along without you, even if the business setting, and this will dramatically cut down on the amount of time you spend sifting through your inbox and responding.

Now what about that cellphone? Keep conversations short, especially if they're not 'pleasure calls' from friends, family, etc. Be polite, but press that you're busy doing something right then and prompt them with something akin to: "Hey, I'm really busy right now and I have to <do whatever> in two minutes, how can I help you?"

If they keep dawdling, politely interrupt with, "I really need to run, could you shoot me an email about this?" or something similar.

Enforce these rules (both with yourself and others!) and you just may find that you have a lot more time on your hands for both work and play.


  1. everything in moderation! its the key to life.

    your friend,

  2. Now wonder I have so much free time. I read news articles from news sites and barely use my phone.

  3. After reading this, I realized that the real problem is Facebook/YouTube, not news or cellphone

  4. good shit bro

  5. Thanks for the comments, guys - Beardcore, if it's the distraction websites that get you, try out this software: Even though Mac is in the address, they also have a Windows version.

    Personally, I get a lot of email, so that was helpful for me - but regarding websites, Facebook is probably the biggest time waster for me.

  6. I definitely do this when I look at the paper (headlines only), and read only if it's interesting and whatnot. I'll check out that site though, seems like an interesting prospect.

  7. Yeah, the internet is the main culprit here. Mmmm, Facebook and Blogger.

  8. How do I ween myself off blogger..?

  9. Nice post m8 ty interesting :P

  10. i feel like people already do this when they comment on my blog. *glance over heading* "oh, how interesting! here's where you can follow me"


  11. Love life hacks blogs. Followed!

  12. Hello~! Good tips ;p. I try to optimize my life too..I ended up getting yelled at by my girlfriend lol...I guess that's one thing you are not supposed to save time on!

    I have followed your blog.

    Could you follow mine too please at:
    SkyBlueTrading Blog

    If any blogger would like to get their blogs followed by others, please visit my blog too~ I have a list of followers who are likely to follow you back! The list is located to the left side of my blog. Follow me and add a comment, I'll add your bloglink to my list~


  13. But I love wasting time!

  14. I'm so glad we dont live during the time when the earth was first started. I know that when dinosaurs walked the earth, the days were only 18 hours long!

    World of Warcraft Cheats @

  15. Interesting read

  16. awesome man!

  17. Good stuff man, this is actually how I've felt for sometime, The problem is everyone knows a little about a lot, instead of knowing a lot about a little.
    Like, some dude knows about cooking, stocks, photoshop, guitar. When someone should be personalized in a specific thing, like stocks.
    Because a lot of American's are like this, we're in essence destroying our need to rely on others, which I think is bad. Anyway, cool stuff braah

  18. You know this is a big problem for me. It's just too easy to fill in the blank time with news RSS facebook/twitter. I'm going to try and check 'em once a day for now on.

    Hope to see more great stuff from your blog!