3 ways to procrastinate and feel like a better person

May 17, 2013

It's Friday. Your Facebook news feed is stale and if time slowed down any more it would stop. Here are three ways to procrastinate, while simultaneously making yourself think that you're becoming a better person.

1. Curate your LinkedIn profile, iTunes library, and Facebook "Likes"

Remember those budding musical groups that you "liked" on Facebook five years ago to support a friend? Or the phase when you decided to try to become an "album person" and download an artist's complete discography to your iTunes library after hearing one of her songs on the radio?

Clean it up. 

There is little that merits less of your attention than editing your music library or Facebook page. Yet, you argue, it's therapeutic, and as soon as you have detoxed your online identity, you'll be much more productive. Bonus: once your LinkedIn is spruced up, you'll get better jobs where you won't even want to slack off at work.

Other options: 

  • Empty your inbox (20,564 unread messages isn't really acceptable)
  • Update your iPhone - you've got just enough time before you leave the office

2. Educate yourself

You've listened to fragmented pieces of the news all week on your way to work, but you feel like you should dedicate your time to grasping that issue you only half-understand. Example: Where did the Israeli-Palestinian conflict really start? Any educated adult should have a handle on a few international issues, right?

So go back to the beginning. Wikipedia the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (or whatever large and exhaustingly complex issue you choose) and don't hold back. Open every link, in a new tab, that Wikipedia offers you. Why shouldn't you read the biography of Yasser Arafat? Sure, the Gaza Strip has a long, tedious history, but today's the day to do some research. The more scrolling down you have to do, the better.

Another option:

3. Be healthier

Vitamin D is important, and even if your desk is by a window, you deserve more. Get outside, stretch your legs and soak up the sunshine. If you see friends or co-workers doing the same, invite them to get a snack.

Buying local is important and collaboration can increase productivity. Procrastination justified.

Other options:

If none of these have helped pass the time, I would just give up and go home.

- Lucy Perkins, Michigan Radio Newsroom

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