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15 Totally Useful Ways To “Waste” Time At Work

In an average 8 hour day, you’ll probably complete about 4 hours of real work. What you do with the other 4 hours is up to you! Use it wisely.

1. Learn another language

Learn another language

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Hola! Bonjour! Learn to say more than just hello. Duolingo is an excellent (and free) resource for quick breaks to learn another language.

2. Create a non-traditional resume

Create a non-traditional resume

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Complete with interesting graphics, appropriate photos and interesting facts you wouldn’t put on your paper resume. This is your opportunity to showcase your skills, interests, and history in an impressive and innovative way. Plus, you’ll look incredibly focused so your boss won’t wonder if you’re actually working.

3. Take an almost free online course

Take an almost free online course

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Exercise your brain in dull moments at work and learn something new on sites like Udemy, Skillshare, Coursera and more.

4. Plan your next vacation

Plan your next vacation

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If you don’t take the time to plan it, you’ll never go! Instead of skipping your nightly routine to search for cheap hotels, do it quickly and efficiently at work through Kayak, Expedia or TravelZoo.

5. Follow a Blog

Follow a Blog

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Or two, or three! Blogs offer humor, advice, tips, education, the list goes on! Reading expands the mind, even if its just about pooping.

6. Clean up your Facebook

Clean up your Facebook

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Delete old friends and useless or embarrassing pictures. Remove random pages you’ve “liked” and review your interests because you probably haven’t looked at them since you made your page.

7. Reorganize your desk and drawers

Reorganize your desk and drawers

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Even make little tabs for hanging dividers. You’ll look so busy running back and forth to the supply room to get dividers and such.

8. Daydream about your future

Daydream about your future

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And write down the things you see. Then figure out and record the necessary steps to get to that point. Spending time thinking about personal and professional development is something most people don’t do enough.

9. Make a fresh pot of coffee

Make a fresh pot of coffee

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Instantly popular. BTW, who’s company’s break room is this friggin awesome? I want to work there. Or maybe at one of these places with stellar break rooms.

10. Make lists

Make lists

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Groceries to buy, people to catch up with, stores to stop at, things to fix at home, you get it. Why play c Candy Crush when you could benefit another area of your life?

11. Reconnect with old contacts

Reconnect with old contacts

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Remember that professor you used to chat with after class every Tuesday? How’s she doing? What about your high school english teacher who just published a book? Take some time to shoot a quick email to some old friends, family, or colleagues and find out how life’s been.

12. Check out your alma mater’s alumni association

Check out your alma mater's alumni association

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These organizations often offer discounts to sporting events, networking opportunities, group trips and career fairs. You can volunteer with them or even become a member of their board or a certain committee.

13. Change your desktop wallpaper

Change your desktop wallpaper

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If you have this classic Microsoft background or the cloudy sky wallpaper, you’re doing it wrong. New wallpaper = new attitude. Try something funny or inspirational. National Geographic has awesome ones. Who doesn’t want a lion wallpaper?

14. Create a Christmas budget and spending plan

Create a Christmas budget and spending plan

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It is never too early to begin planning for Christmas. If you wait until the last minute, you’re creating extra stress. Why not plan now? Use an excel spreadsheet (so your boss doesn’t ask questions) to determine who to buy for, an overall and itemized budget, and gift ideas. Need inspiration?

15. Make Twitter lists

Make Twitter lists

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Get your Tweet game up and use the excellent Lists tool on Twitter to organize what you follow. Twitter can be a huge mess if you have to sort through the content on your own. Make lists for News, Friends, Humor, HigherEd, etc. so you can get the information you’re looking for quickly.

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