Increase Productivity by Making Time for Vices

, | February 7, 2014 | By

Increase ProductivityTypical day: I’m all geared up and ready to attack my tasks head on. I've got a jam-packed week and there’s no time to spare. But how is it that I find myself at the end of each day with little accomplished and a lot left on my plate? Because I didn't pencil in time for my vices and guilty pleasures.

The theme of today is perfect for a Friday because I’m encouraging you to take a break. In fact, I’m encouraging you to take a break everyday to be more productive and find more time in your day. I know, I know, it sounds counter-intuitive to what you’re used to, but check out these reasons for penciling in time for your vices and you’ll see what I mean.

You’re going to do them anyway

Whether it’s a relaxing yoga break in the morning or explosive video games in the afternoon, your body craves that down time. And the only way it will fill the void is with mindless internet surfing and zoning out. If you pencil in time for the things you enjoy, you’ll find yourself getting more out of your day.

By scheduling an hour in the morning for reading the paper or even three 15-minute intervals of Clash of Clans (my personal vice) throughout the day, you’ll still fulfill the need to unwind without sucking up so much time. Chances are you were going to end up doing it anyways, but if you create a schedule or routine you’ll find yourself craving it less and getting more done.

It recharges your mind

Zoning out is an easy thing to do when you’ve got a full schedule, so why not make time for it with something you enjoy? If you know that spending time on Pinterest gives you a mental break or even inspires you, why not pencil it in? This mental refreshment allows you to take more innovative approaches to projects and obstacles, creating a more productive environment.

Making time for fresh air or reading a chapter in your novel allows you to mentally check out and rethink your strategy when it’s time to check back in. Imagine how productive you could be if you scheduled time everyday to let your mind wander. You’ll begin absorbing great ideas rather than trying to constantly pump them out.

Breaks feel more earned

Rather than feeling like you must get things done in a certain amount of time, you’ll feel like you want to get things done in a certain amount of time. When you see your favorite time of the day coming up you naturally focus more on the task at hand to get in done in time for your break. Basically, you’re trying to earn your break rather than justify it.

It’s that same feeling when you’re nearing the end of the day, realize you’ve got a million things to do, and you’re suddenly laser-focused. You know you want to get home or meet up with friends, but you’re not leaving that project unfinished. So your instinct is to tune out the rest of the world and get the job done right, and it’s often your most productive time of the day.

So I say go ahead and pencil in time for vices! Allow yourself time for things you enjoy to increase productivity, release stress, and feel less guilty about time spent during the day. It’s a counter-intuitive approach, but it’s one that works well.

For those of you wondering about my vice, clash of clans, it's a game you can plan on your phone. Here's the trailer for it. Good times. I think I'll go play it for a few minutes now that I've got this blog post written. I deserve it.

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