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Top Time Wasters and Productive Activities to Do Instead

March 27, 2023
Top Time Wasters and  Productive Activities to Do Instead

Hey there, productivity enthusiasts! Are you tired of wasting countless hours scrolling through social media, watching pointless videos, or binge-watching TV shows? Well, you've come to the right place! In today's blog post, we'll identify the top time wasters and provide you with productive activities to do instead. Let's dive in and reclaim your precious time!

Mindless Social Media Scrolling

We've all been there – you're just casually checking your social media feeds and, before you know it, you've wasted an hour (or more) of your time. Social media is designed to be addictive, so it's no surprise that it's a massive time-waster.

Instead of scrolling aimlessly, try setting time limits for your social media use. Schedule specific times of the day for checking your accounts and stick to them. You'll soon notice how much time you're saving!

Binge-Watching TV Shows

While there's nothing wrong with enjoying a good TV show, binge-watching can quickly turn into a serious time-sink. Research shows that spending excessive time in front of screens can have negative effects on your mental and physical health.

If you find yourself binge-watching too often, try implementing the "two-episode rule": limit yourself to watching only two episodes of a show per day. This will help you maintain a healthy balance between entertainment and productivity.

Endless YouTube Video Watching

It's easy to get lost in the endless array of videos on YouTube. One video leads to another, and before you know it, you've spent hours watching content that doesn't add value to your life.

To combat this time-waster, start curating playlists of educational or inspirational content that you genuinely enjoy. By focusing on these types of videos, you'll not only reduce wasted time but also learn something new in the process.


Procrastination is the arch-nemesis of productivity. It's the act of delaying or postponing tasks that you should be doing right now. The longer you put off these tasks, the more time you waste and the more stressed you become.

To overcome procrastination, try breaking your tasks into smaller, manageable steps. This will make them less daunting and more achievable. Set deadlines for yourself, and reward yourself for meeting them – you'll be amazed at how much more productive you become!

Playing Video Games for Hours on End

person playing video game

Video games can be a fun way to unwind, but spending too much time gaming can have negative effects on your productivity and overall well-being. Like with binge-watching TV shows, it's essential to strike a healthy balance between gaming and other aspects of your life.

Instead of gaming for hours, set a time limit for yourself and stick to it. Use gaming as a reward for completing tasks, rather than as a default activity when you're bored or have free time.

Checking Emails Constantly

Frequent email checking is a productivity killer. Constantly refreshing your inbox throughout the day distracts you from more important tasks and disrupts your focus.

Try designating specific times of the day to check your emails, such as first thing in the morning, after lunch, and in the late afternoon. By doing this, you'll minimize interruptions and maintain better focus throughout the day.

Unnecessary Online Shopping

Browsing online stores for items you don't really need can quickly turn into a time-consuming habit. Not only does this waste valuable time, but it can also have negative effects on your finances.

To curb this habit, start by unsubscribing from promotional emails, which often tempt you into shopping. Set a monthly budget for discretionary spending and stick to it. By taking control of your shopping habits, you'll save both time and money.

Watching the News Nonstop

Staying informed about current events is important, but obsessively watching the news can be a significant time-waster. Excessive news consumption can also contribute to increased stress and anxiety.

Instead, try setting aside a specific time each day to catch up on the news, and limit yourself to a few reliable sources. This will help you stay informed without wasting excessive amounts of time or causing unnecessary stress.


While it may seem like multitasking allows you to get more done, it's actually a productivity killer. Switching between tasks disrupts your focus and reduces the quality of your work.

To be more productive, try focusing on one task at a time. Create a to-do list and prioritize tasks based on their importance. Tackle each task individually and fully commit your attention to it. You'll be amazed at how much more efficient you become.


Engaging in gossip can be a major time-waster and can harm your relationships with others. It's essential to recognize that gossiping does not add value to your life or the lives of those around you.

Instead of gossiping, try engaging in meaningful conversations with friends, family, and colleagues. Share ideas, experiences, and support each other's goals. By fostering positive relationships, you'll use your time more effectively and build a strong support network.

Now that we've covered the top 20 time wasters, let's look at five productive activities to do instead!


Replacing some of your time-wasting activities with regular exercise offers numerous benefits, including improved physical health, stress reduction, and increased energy levels. Whether it's going for a walk, practicing yoga, or hitting the gym, incorporating exercise into your daily routine will help you make the most of your time.


person reading

Reading is a fantastic way to spend your free time productively. Not only is it entertaining, but it also helps to expand your knowledge, improve your vocabulary, and stimulate your imagination. Choose books that align with your interests or goals, and set aside dedicated reading time each day.

Learning a New Skill

Investing time in learning a new skill is a great way to boost your productivity and personal growth. Whether it's learning a new language, picking up a musical instrument, or mastering a software program, the possibilities are endless. Choose something that genuinely interests you, and dedicate time to it each week. Who knows, you might get a high income work from home job.


Volunteering is a rewarding and productive way to spend your time. Not only does it help others and contribute positively to your community, but it can also help you develop new skills, make connections, and gain a sense of accomplishment. Find a cause that you're passionate about and get involved.


Building and maintaining professional relationships is crucial for career growth and personal development. Attending networking events, joining industry-related groups, and connecting with others on LinkedIn are all excellent ways to strengthen your network. By investing time in networking, you'll open doors to new opportunities and friendships.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, by identifying and eliminating time-wasting activities and replacing them with more productive pursuits, you can take control of your time and lead a more fulfilling, efficient life. Remember, time is a valuable resource – use it wisely!

Dr. Hilda Wong, MD

My name is Dr. Hilda Wong, MD, graduated from Avalon University School of Medicine. I have over 5 years of medical externship experience and a published researcher on PubMed. I'm also a health and nutrition enthusiast and have written several blogs and magazines in these areas. Forgot to mention that I own a Toy Australian Shepherd and a Betta Fish, and have an amazing zest for life, fashion, health, nutrition, and pets.

Dr. Hilda Wong, MD