3 Ways to Be Productive When You Don’t Want to Work

We all have those days–perhaps even periods throughout every day–when we’re easily distracted. We know we should be working because we have work to do, but we find every excuse not to do work. Then we end up cramming in the items on our to-do list at the end of the day, or we just stay late.

Here are three quick and easy solutions for this problem:

  1. Use playtime as a carrot to do actual work. You might find yourself delaying an important item on your to-do list while you idly check your personal e-mail. This is a type of work limbo that won’t satisfy your work or playtime needs. So give yourself something to work for: After you complete the next big item on your to-do list, reward yourself with a short internet break.
  2. Move away from your desk for a while. It’s remarkable how much work you can get done when you’re not at your desk. Even if you just move to someone else’s computer, I guarantee you’ll get a ton of work done if you move away from your comfort zone. You won’t have your trusty web bookmarks to distract you. If you ever really need to get some work done without any distractions, give this one a try.
  3. Take an intentional 10-minute break. Sometimes you may find yourself drifting away from work and into the world of e-mail, Facebook, and YouTube. When you catch yourself doing that, instead of immediately returning to work, take control of the distraction and own it. Admit that you need some playtime and say, “Okay, I’ll play for 10 minutes, and then I will work.” You’re more likely to keep playtime to a minimum if you realize how often you’re doing it and take control of the situation.

All in all, it’s about self control. As I’ll discuss tomorrow, self-control is a major indicator of success…even in your sex life.

I spent some time today revamping my About page to make it more helpful for both new and returning readers (especially those who need a break from work). Let me know what you think.

4 thoughts on “3 Ways to Be Productive When You Don’t Want to Work”

  1. The new ABOUT page looks great! I think you’ve found a very creative way to give visitors an overview of your blog content. I do have two suggestions/thoughts though:

    1) I think the word “ABOUT” should be larger than (or at least as large as) the other subsequent titles

    2) I think a lot of returning readers aren’t necessarily in any of those categories. You have a following of people who consider viewing your blog to be part of their daily routine, but who aren’t necessarily taking a break from work. I’d suggest rewording the first subtitle to include that category of people.

    • Thanks Trev! I don’t have control over the size of ABOUT, but I can control the other font sizes. I made them a little smaller.

      That’s a fair point about returning readers. Any suggestions on how to rephrase the first part?

      • Perhaps “Loyal Blog Followers and Those Needing a Break From Work” (or, to match the style, “If You’re a Loybal Blog Follower or You Need a Break From Work”


        JSB Regulars and Those Needing a Break From Work
        JSB Subscribers and Those Needing a Break From Work
        Blog Subscribers and Those Needing a Break From Work

        If You’re a Stalker…

  2. I agree with T-Mac on the need of About to be more standout than the rest of the subsequent titles. The “If You Need a Break” can be “If You’re JSB Follower(or Subscriber) or You Need a Break” or “If You’re a Stalker”. I like that one. 🙂

    I think the “If you want to read this every day” needs to be change to something else because 1. you don’t post daily and 2. what follows it doesn’t seem to go with it. They are more related to interacting with you, your commenters, and your blog. So it can be

    “If you want to interact with me (or my blog or us)”
    “If you want to converse/comment/discuss/relate with me”
    “If you want to follow/subscribe my blog”

    “If you’re a stalker” works, too. 🙂 Whatever floats your boat.


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