How to Take Advantage of Downtime

What do you do with downtime?
What do you do with downtime?

What do you do in your downtime? We all have time in our days in which we can’t or don’t do much. Why not take advantage of that time and do something productive?

For those who work outside the home, you likely have a commute. My commute is about a half hour each way but I also drive a lot to clients around the Midwest. So I spend several hours per month (sometimes per day) in the car. That time is useless and I decided I wanted to make it useful.

It used to be that I listened to sports talk radio if I was in the car. But, that really did nothing to increase my knowledge or decrease stress. What else could I do while I drive but listen to music or talk radio?

Audio books were the answer. I could listen to fiction books for entertainment or non-fiction books for learning. If you listen to a good book, you’ll be amazed at how frequently you will find yourself sitting in the driveway or parking garage until the book or chapter is over. It’s so entertaining and makes driving time go by so fast.

Listening to audio books was a great way to spend my downtime in the car. It became quite expensive though because audio books are not necessarily cheap. When I realized how expensive it was becoming, my CD player in my car broke. What was I to do then?

Thankfully, I discovered podcasts. At first, I didn’t think I would like to listen to these but now that is all I listen to in the car. Actually, as I write this, I’m in the car listening to a podcast while I wait to go inside to a meeting.

Now I’m educated and entertained at the same time and all while I’m spending time driving.

What other downtime do you have and what do you do during that time? Most of us probably watch tv in our real downtime. Entertainment and relaxation is needed every now and then. Think about what you could accomplish though if you didn’t spend two hours each night watching tv.

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Do you find yourself complaining that the house chores never get done, a project never gets completed or you have too much work to do and not enough time to do it? Come on, spend your time appropriately rather than complaining. Reduce your tv time and see what you can get accomplished.

A lot of your downtime can be productive if you just choose to do something. It doesn’t really matter what you do as long as you find value in what your doing. If you value your tv time more than completing a project, then it’s valuable to you. Determine what you truly value and take action to realize that value.

photo credit: Adam Tinworth via photopin cc

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