3 ‘time wasters’ that can actually boost your skill levels, productivity and motivation

The last year or so has given many of us the chance to develop a whole new range of bad habits. Having to stay in, sometimes for days on end, with just the fridge, TV, and internet as distractions can have so many negative effects on our mental and physical health.

While many of the activities below will be seen by some as just wasting time, in reality, the opposite may actually be true. If you spend all your time doing just these things, you won’t get anything else done. However, in smaller doses, not only are these things that can be comforting in tough times, but they can also have positive effects on your skills, productivity, and motivation.

Watching your favorite TV shows and Movies

The true art of binge-watching all your favorite TV shows and films, whether it is with or without popcorn, potato chips, or hotdogs, has been a big favorite for people during the pandemic in 2020/2021. We just love lounging on that immensely comfortable sofa while watching all your favorite characters run around or get themselves into totally avoidable situations.

However, these TV shows and movies are our favorites for a reason, and that is because they connect with us in some way. They cheer us up in tough times or mean something to us on an emotional level that can get us out of a rut and motivate us to either keep going or at least get started in the first place.

Playing games online

Online gaming is so popular right now, and the range of games far exceeds what was available even just a few years ago, and is no longer the mind-numbing work avoidance tactic you might have dismissed it as. The games are a bit more advanced than most people think and usually amount to more than just matching three items of fruit. There are farms, castles, towns, and whole islands to be run, and it can require players to think strategically and work with limited resources to achieve a goal.

Even putting on a headset and storming enemy lines needs a level of coordination and cooperation with either friends or complete strangers to get the job done, which along with the management techniques outlined above, are skills that would not be totally useless in the workplace.

Watching cat videos

There is no shortage of cat videos online. In fact, you could probably spend months (if not years) watching them all. While doing that might be a bad idea, in short bursts, watching a feline’s failed attempts at leaping onto a countertop could be extremely good for your mental health and could improve your productivity as well.

If cats aren’t your thing, there are almost as many videos of dogs chasing frisbees, not noticing a glass door has been closed, or making a noise that sounds like a human talking to keep you happy. These will do precisely the same job, as can videos of bunnies or whatever your preferred furry YouTube star happens to be.