Time is Money: The Biggest Time-Wasters and How to Avoid Them

Posted on 04/22/2010

They say time is money. If that’s true, have you ever thought about how much that Facebook addiction is costing you? Or how much money is going down the drain when you tune in to the Saved By the Bell marathon? Here are some of the biggest time wasters and how to avoid them.

Facebook - We’re not picking on Facebook, it’s just that the social media site is mega-popular and incredibly addictive. Maybe you spend lots of time on another social network or just surfing the web. But finding a new tractor for your Farmville game or designing your own flair may not be the best way to spend your day. To avoid turning Facebook (or any website) into a black hole for your time, give yourself 15 minutes at certain points of your day to check in. Set an alarm if you have to, but make sure you stick with your allotted time.

Television - We all have “our shows.” They’re the ones we won’t miss for anything. But if your night is packed with can’t-miss shows you may want to reevaluate your TV watching habits. Pick a few shows a week to watch, but when they’re over turn the television off.

Interruptions - Interruptions come in all forms. Instant messages, phone calls, dramatic co-workers—pinpoint your most common interruptions and figure out a plan for eliminating them. Spend your time on activities that will give you the most profit. Set aside a certain portion of your day for responding to phone calls and avoid instant messaging throughout your day. The interruptions will seriously limit your productivity.

Email - Be honest. How many times do you check your email every day? Try cutting that in half or more. Like just about every other activity, schedule a time for it. Instead of constantly reacting to every email that comes in, respond to them all at once.

Misplaced Items - According to Crown Financial Services, studies show the average executive wastes four and a half hours a week looking for lost papers. If they earn $30,000 a year, that means they waste $3,376 looking for lost stuff. For someone earning $60,000 that number jumps to nearly $7,000! But perhaps more important than the wasted money is the two and a half years we waste looking for lost things in our lifetime. Avoid this by taking time to truly get organized. Set up a system for filing papers, documents and bills that saves time and works for you. If keys are your problem, designate a convenient place for them to be stored consistently. Train yourself to put them there every time you walk in the door. Who knows what this small step will save you over time.

By Alison Storm

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Posted on 04.22.10 at 8:58 AM

The biggest time-waster: spending too much time shopping online, and obsessively looking for bargains every day! This eats both time and money, which equals quite a bit of time according to this post.

hypocrisy rears its ugly head

Posted on 04.22.10 at 12:34 PM

Haha, I completely agree with Phyltre. Having Bargainist.com give lessons on how to waste time and money is pretty ironic. I'm surprised Ms. Storm was able to write this without a hint of tongue-in-cheek.


Posted on 04.27.10 at 8:13 AM

Yes, you are right Phyltre, doing anything obsessively can eat up lots of time. But I think Bargainist makes finding deals easier! Thanks for taking the time to read my article. ;-)

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