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Last Updated on July 24, 2018

15 Productive Things to Do When Bored (So Time Is Not Wasted)

15 Productive Things to Do When Bored (So Time Is Not Wasted)

For most people, when they’re bored, they just sit there and don’t know what to do. They watch the clock ticks and the time passes by, and then several hours are gone.

But what if I tell you that when you really are feeling bored, there’re lots of things you can do to feel (and really be) productive?

Here are 15 productive things to do when bored based on the principles of elimination, consumption and work:

1. Eliminate clutter

One of the reasons why you’re not as prolific as you want may be that you have too much clutter.

Productive things to do when bored include tidying up your desk, removing books you’ll never read from your bookshelf and deleting the smartphone apps you never use.

Not only will you have done some housecleaning, the task might also give you energy to move on to the next, bigger task.

This guide will help you make decluttering easier:

How to Declutter Your Life and Reduce Stress (The Ultimate Guide)

2. Eliminate distractions

Is there anything in particular that’s distracting you? If you’re looking for productive things to do when bored, zone in on what specifically is slowing down your productivity.

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Social media is a popular detractor, for example. Sign out of your social networks so you can focus on things that actually matter.

Take a look at these techniques to free yourself from social media distractions:

How Not To Let Social Media Control Your Body and Mind

3. Eliminate concerns

Are you worried about something? Is that concern getting in the way of your productivity?

Deal with the problems that are keeping you from spending your time as well as you should. Examples include tasks like double-checking your schedule and sending follow-up emails.

By removing all of your stressors, you’ll be a lot more prolific.

4. Eliminate the unnecessary

There are a lot of things in our lives that might be nice but are distractions to our productivity because they’re not necessary.

Find out what those things are and remove them from your place of work.

If you find everything around you necessary, then maybe you can try this:

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One Question to Help You Successfully Declutter Anything

5. Eliminate quick tasks

Even if you don’t have enough energy for a big task, you might have enough to do a small one.

Check off items on your to-do list that can be done quickly like making a phone call or sending off an email.

6. Consume knowledge

When you’re bored, it’s an opportune time to learn. One of the most productive things to do is to read how-to books or watch YouTube tutorials to learn something new.

Here’re some great resources for you:

24 Killer Websites that Make You Cleverer

7. Consume data (or maps)

Information isn’t the same as knowledge. Are there names, terms, dates, statistics, places or something similar you need to ingrain in your head?

Studying data or maps is one of the most productive things you can do when you feel bored.

8. Consume fiction

You have to be careful with this one; you can’t just watch an episode of your favorite TV show and call the time you spent productive. But you can pick some meaningful fictions and start reading:

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30 Books That Everyone Should Read At Least Once In Their Lives

9. Consume non-fiction

Reading a biography about someone in your profession or an account of historical events relevant to your career can be extremely productive things to do when bored. Time can be well-spent watching, reading or listening to something that inspires you:

Reading is good: 30 Inspiring Books You Have to Read

Ted Talks are nice: 20 Most Inspiring TED Talks of All Time That You Should Not Miss

Podcasts are inspiring too: You Are What You Listen To: 11 Podcasts To Inspire Yourself

10. Consume culture

By consuming culture not only are you enriching yourself, you’re also trying a new experience. Taking part in activities you haven’t done before can be very productive things to do when bored.

11. Work on your work

Work is probably the hardest thing to do when bored, but it’s still possible to muscle through the lethargy and get things done.

If you’re unmotivated, remind yourself that your time best spent is doing the work that pays your income. A cash incentive goes a long way towards productivity.

12. Work on your craft

If you don’t feel like doing something career-related, try something artistic!

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Creative activities like painting or creative writing could be the perfect productive things to do when bored.

13. Work on your physical health

If you don’t have a lot of energy to do something mental, hopefully you at least have the energy to partake in a physical activity.

Some productive things to do when you’re bored are running, walking, biking and lifting weights. Any kind of exercise is likely to free you from boredom.

14. Work on your emotional health

Is there a personal issue that’s making it hard for you to be interested in anything? If so, address it. You’ll find productivity a whole lot easier.

Become emotionally healthy by learning from the emotionally healthy ones:

15 Things Emotionally Healthy People Do

15. Work on your mental health

Boredom is often in reality something akin to anxiety or depression. Try doing mental exercises that help you focus on positive experiences and mindfulness to alleviate you of what you’re perceiving as boredom.

Practicing mindfulness and meditation can calm and relax you, you may want to take the advice from this professional counsellor and psychotherapist:

I’ve Tried Mindfulness Meditation, Here’s Why You Should Try it Too

A few simple steps towards improving your mental health can go a long way, not only towards productivity but your happiness in general.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

More by this author

Matt OKeefe

Matt is a marketer and writer who shares about lifestyle and productivity tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on June 19, 2019

10 Websites To Learn Something New In 30 Minutes A Day

10 Websites To Learn Something New In 30 Minutes A Day

Learning something new is always an exciting endeavour to commence. The problem is that most of us get wrapped up in busy distractions throughout the day so that we can never find the time to learn the new skill we want.

What’s worse is that some of us spend hours learning this new skill only to give up after a few months, which is precious time that goes down the toilet.

Luckily, there’s a better solution.

Instead of using our time to sit through long lectures and lengthy video courses, we can take advantage of all the amazing websites that can help us learn a new skill in 30 minutes or less.

We’ve collected the best sites that teach a diversified list of topics and have decided to share them with you here today. Enjoy!

1. Lynda

Estimated time: 20-30 mins
Topics: Business, marketing, design, software tools

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Get access to 1,000s of courses with a 10-day free trial to develop your skills in business, photoshop, software, and much more.

2. Skillshare

Estimated time: 20-30 mins
Topics: Cooking, design, software tools, marketing, photography

Ten dollars per month gets you access to bite-sized, on-demand courses taught by leading experts like Gary Vaynerchuk, Guy Kawasaki, and more.

3. Hackaday

Estimated time: 5 mins
Topics: Life hacks, productivity

This website delivers tips to make your life better and more productive. Just 5 minutes a day is all you need to learn new life hacks to improve your lifestyle.

4. Codeacademy

Estimated time: 15-30 mins
Topics: Software development

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A gamified approach to coding, Codeacademy helps anyone build a website through an interactive learning method. Learn any programming language from HTML, CSS, Javascript, Ruby on Rails, and more by actually building instead of spending your time on theory.

5. 7-min

Estimated time: 7 mins
Topics: Health & Fitness

Do you have just 7 minutes to get in shape? Most of us aren’t in the shape that we want to be because of the lack of time we have. Putting our workout apparel on, driving to the gym, and driving back can take up a lot of our time in themselves.

In just 7 minutes, this website will go through dozens of routines to get you in shape and ready for the day ahead. Time is no longer an excuse!

6. Calm

Estimated time: 10 mins
Topics: Meditation

Get guided meditations right to your screen. With Calm, you can learn different types of meditation where a teacher can guide you step-by-step through the process, even if it’s your first time trying meditation.

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7. Highbrow

Estimated time: 5 mins
Topics: Business, creative skills, design, history

Bite-sized email courses delivered to your inbox every morning to learn everything from film history, marketing, business, and more.

8. Big Think

Estimated time: 10 mins
Topics: Technology, science, life

Learn from the world’s experts about scientific breakthroughs, revolutionary business concepts, and more in short, chunk-sized videos.

9. Khan Academy

Estimated time: 30 mins
Topics: Academics

Recognized by Bill Gates as one of the best teachers online, Salman Khan breaks down complicated subjects into simplified concepts to help you understand them in minutes, not weeks.

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10. Rype

Estimated time: 15-30 mins
Topics: Foreign languages

Are you “too busy” to learn a language? Meet Rype, your personal trainer for languages. Get unlimited 1-on-1 private language lessons with professional teachers around the world. Each lesson is just 30 minutes, allowing you to fit learning a language into your busy lifestyle. You can try it free for 14-days and see for yourself.

Over to you

Which of these topics were your favorite?

We’d love to hear from you, and please share this with friends who are also looking to learn something new!

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