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Cure boredom with productivity

Updated on May 7, 2011

Ever sit and stare blankly at your screen for hours?

It seems like almost everyone inevitably finds themselves at a point sometime in their week where they don't want to do what they normally do but they don't feel like doing anything else. When this happens to me I sometimes end up sitting in front of my computer for hours without even doing anything. It's terrible. My desires are caught in between wanting normal entertainment like playing video games and doing what I need to do like work. However, I have found a cure! I call it mild productivity. It's like when you were in high school and in order to avoid doing homework you cleaned your room. Productive, just not really relevant to the problem at hand.

The idea is to find something relatively simple, moderately amusing, and at least somewhat productive. This kind of thing can perfectly hit the spot when you don't want to do when you need to do, but also don't want to do what you normally want to do.

  • Earn money online. This one is a big one for me and can almost always entertain me for at least 30 minutes. Even if I'm only making small amounts of money, I feel productive anyway. Find a way, or new ways, to earn money online. Hub pages is one! There are dozens of ways and a Google search will give you way more than you could ever read through. Completing surveys, offers, various tasks, blogging, etc.
  • Earn money offline with a new hobby. There are many hobbies that can generate you some extra money, and make you feel productive. Collecting valuables, photography, any form of craftsmanship, taking a metal detector to the beach or parks, there are dozens of ways.
  • Clean something that is easy to clean. Maybe you don't want to tackle the dishes or the toilet bowl, but wouldn't it be nice to get some of the junk off your desk so you have more room to put junk on it later on? Take the receipts and scraps of paper out of your backpack. Take a look through whatever 'junk drawer' you have and see what can be tossed out. Mildly productive, and mildly entertaining because it's easy and you often times run into things you forgot about. Like a 20 dollar bill stuck beneath something you haven't picked up in a while.
  • Exercise. This one isn't for everyone, but those who give it a shot tend to really like it. Doing some basic exercises or even taking a trip to the gym can feel amazingly productive as you can really improve your body, health, and confidence. You may not be getting any real work done, but you can work on your 6 pack abs, you handsome beast.
  • Learn a new skill. This one is limitless. Practice being ambidextrous, start learning a new language, learn how to break dance, any type of skill that can potentially be used to show off, make money, or improve productivity. Perhaps something you've always been curious about but never tried.
  • Random interesting facts. Realistically this is not very productive, but you're learning, and learning is productive...right? This is sort of how I feel when I watch Planet Earth on the Discovery Channel. I'm really just entertaining myself, but I'm learning about nature! Therefore it isn't wasted time. Same thing goes for random interesting quotes. Enlightening, realistically probably will not affect your life, but shhhhh it feels good.

I think this list is long enough. Any longer and I would probably turn away anyone in that specific type of mood and therefore render moot the entire purpose of this article. So go partially entertain yourselves with the illusion of productivity.


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