Four “Time Suckers” That Waste Time

There are things that we all do – or, don’t do – that result in us wasting far more time than we realize, especially when we’re “in the moment”.  Yes, spending too much time on social media and not properly managing your daily tasks can leak your time, but we’re talking about much bigger “time suckers” that can really get in your way.  Addressing these can free up tremendous amounts of time and energy.

Not Asking for Help.  It’s natural for many of us to “be a hero” and bite off more than we can chew.  And, yes, asking for help is probably one of the most difficult things to do – especially at work.  You might have a fear of looking weak or incompetent.  You might be afraid to admit that you don’t know it all.  You might have a hard time swallowing your pride.  When you ask for help, you’ll usually save time, gain respect and trust, empower others, create additional opportunities for growth and free up time to focus on other things that matter.

Trying to Make Bad Relationships Work.  Relationships – “good” and “bad” – require maintenance, and that means time, energy and effort.  But there’s a difference between maintaining a good relationship and trying to force a bad one that doesn’t make much sense to begin with.  While you can learn something from everyone and every relationship, those that cloud your judgement, prolong your unhappiness and distract you from things that matter to you most need to be severed.  It’s easy to get comfortable with denial and convince ourselves we don’t really care and we’re fine.  In reality, ignoring the pain only prolongs it.  Our work suffers; the rest of our relationships suffer.

Dwelling on Your Mistakes and Shortcomings.  Learning from your mistakes, slip ups and failures is one thing – and an important one at that.  Dwelling on them, however, wastes your time, diminishes your confidence and keeps you from getting on with your life.  Whereas learning from mistakes can prevent them from happening again, dwelling also make you more apt to repeat your mistakes.  When you think about your own experiences, it probably makes sense.  Dwelling makes you feel like a failure, and when you feel like a failure, it’s easy to tell yourself there’s no point in trying.  Of course, you don’t want to skip over your mistakes and ignore them; the goal is to glean something from them.

Worrying Too Much About Other People.  It’s easy to waste time worrying about other people, too.  This can manifest in many ways, such as worrying about other people’s problems over which you have no control.  It might also show up as getting annoyed with people who undermine you.  Or, maybe it’s indulging in another time-wasting emotion: jealousy.  Maybe it’s comparing yourself to others, wanting what they had and feeling inadequate.  Like most negative, destructive feelings, the first and biggest step to overcoming it is understanding it.

Most of us are probably guilty of all of these at some point, and really, they’re human nature.  Regret is another big waste of time, so there’s no point in beating yourself up over these.  The sooner you learn from them, though, the sooner you can free up your time and energy to live the life you want.

To your time,

Change That Up

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