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Killing Time

killing time procrastination

Are you killing time or is it killing you?


Killing time. We all do it. If I’m in a long check-out line I’ll clear a bunch of emails. Perhaps you kill time in the evening by watching your favorite show or for some going down the rabbit hole of binge-watching Netflix.

Killing time is usually harmless but there are times when it’s not.

Killing time becomes a liability when we use it to ignore our pending tasks. Perhaps it’s an unpleasant phone call to a homeowner about an appraisal, or God forbid, a second appraisal. Killing time is a space filler- filling the space where we could be more productive or accomplished.

Here are some strategies to avoid killing time that kills your productivity.

1. Time-block your calendar. If you have a typical workflow throughout the week time block it on your calendar. When do you typically call applicants to update them? What are the best days and times to call on prospective borrowers? Fill the time-space before something else fills it.

2. Eat the frog first. Mark Twain wrote, “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And If it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first”. He speaking to prioritizing both your time and energy. It’s best to tackle your most challenging tasks early in the day.

3. Make a list. Not necessarily a traditional to-do list but capture all of the things you need to do. Next prioritize them in categories. Perhaps it’s low, medium and high. You could also add categories such as in progress, completed, or discarded. Trello is a great tool to manage the myriad of things you have to do.

4. Take a short break. This isn’t wasting time but maximizing it! I’ll typically step out of my office and take a short walk for a few blocks near our downtown office. The important thing is to get out and get moving.

Time is our most precious resource. We spend time away from our families to earn a living to provide for our daily needs. We spend time with our loved ones because we know someday we may not have the opportunity. If you guard anything in your life or your daily schedule it’s time.



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