By Kristin Schultz
Do you ever waste time? Whether you’re overwhelmed or bored or just feeling a little more distracted than usual, you’ve probably fallen into one of these time-wasting traps.
Research rabbit hole. You need to find information for next week’s message. You get online and start by searching “gifts of the Holy Spirit.” Now it’s three hours later and you are now reading an article called “10 Famous People who Grew up in Cults, Including Some who Didn’t Even Know They Were a Part of One.”
Multitasking mayhem. Do you find yourself juggling too many things? You’re waiting on hold to order Sunday school curriculum, sending an email to your head volunteer, and making a mental list of supplies you need from Hobby Lobby. Multitasking may seem like an efficient use of time, but trying to concentrate on more than one thing at a time usually results in more work or having to redo work.
Meetings, meetings, meetings. You want to be in the loop so you schedule and attend more meetings than necessary. It’s good to meet to exchange information and build relationships, but useless meetings are giant time wasters. Only call a meeting when you need to and have a solid, manageable agenda.
Email rapid response. Are you the person who replies to every email within five minutes of it arriving in your inbox? People appreciate a quick response, but replying to every email as soon as it comes in is a time waster because it interrupts the task you were already doing. Instead, finish what you’re doing and reply to multiple emails at once.
Social media time sucks. Sometimes you get overwhelmed sometimes and take mental breaks by scrolling your Facebook or Instagram feed. This is okay most of the time, but unchecked social media use will steal hours from your workday. Set aside time to maintain your pages and watch the clock when checking out your feeds.
Disorganized disaster. Do you spend a lot of time trying to find things on your desk and find yourself easily distracted? A daily, prioritized to-do list might help and clearing the clutter would create a more productive work environment.
Even the most efficient and productive of us get sucked into time-wasting behaviors and habits. Take a few minutes to look at how you spend your day and see if there are tasks you can eliminate or delegate that would help you make the most of your day.
How do you avoid distractions in ministry work?
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