We are designed to be busy even when we aren’t busy. Like free-flowing water fills a hole, we are creatures that find a way to fill our time. Sometimes we fill our time with doing something productive. Sometimes we fill our time with something unproductive. I’ve said before that even recreational time can be productive when you are refreshing yourself. Time spent to become refreshed is important and productive. But, why do we fill out time with something unproductive?
Many times doing something unproductive is a form of procrastination, and maybe it is. But because we are creatures that are always doing something, more than procrastination it is more an act of filling time.
We are all allotted the same amount of time every day. Some people do much more than others. Why is that? It isn’t because they are that much smarter or have more skills than we do. It is that everything highly productive people do has significant meaning to them.
I first experienced this in high school. I wasn’t the best student, but I earned better grades when I was involved in more activities. It may sound counterintuitive, but when I didn’t have much to do my grades suffered. The extra time I had wasn’t valuable to me so I wasted it unproductively. My lack of productivity bleed in to other areas of my life like school. When I got a job and was involved in the marching band, my grades improved.
“The way you spend your time is a result of the way you see your time and the way you really see your priorities.” - Stephen Covey
I learned that dogs are the same way. A few years ago I asked our dog trainer about my dog digging in our yard. He told us that she digs because she is board. She wants someone to play with her.
Don’t dig in your yard. When you are being unproductive stop digging like a dog. Look at what you are involved in. If you are wasting your time you may need to do more meaningful work. Press your time by doing more of what has significant meaning to you so that you make your time more valuable. Although some things may fall off your plate, you will find that your productivity increases exponentially.
When have you been so busy you
actually were more productive?
What do you do when you are bored?