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How To Unplug For A Productive Day

How do you start your mornings? Do you set your alarm early, visions of productivity dancing in your head as you dream, only to find yourself rushing in the morning? Just where does that time go?

In the past, I consistently felt as though my mornings were rushed; breakfast was an afterthought, lunch was never packed, and I was lucky if I ran into work at 9:05. I just couldn’t put my finger on the problem, until one day, it hit me: I was spending the first 20 minutes of my waking hours on Facebook*!

How To Remove The Unnecessary To Be ProductiveAs hilarious as pictures of cats with captions are, I realized that rolling over to scroll through endless (pointless) pictures and status updates really wasn’t helping me get ahead. It was time to minimize my technology usage to maximize my mornings.

While I am just as fond of (read: dependent on) technology as the next 20-something, I have found that sometimes my unlimited access to the Wed and all its goodies slows me down. I can brush my teeth while using Pinterest to find new recipes, update my husband’s to-do list on Cozi while he’s at work, or spend my lunch breaks with an endless supply of games. None of these things are actually improving my quality of life. I have dozens of unopened cookbooks in my kitchen, my husband hardly checks the to-do list anyway, and my lunch break would be better spent working on my Thesis.

Does this sound like you? It’s probably time to unplug when:

– You’re frequently running late to work because you just have to update your status with pictures of your breakfast. You find yourself checking Facebook just because you’re bored.

– Your dinner conversations take place over text message, yet your significant other is sitting right in front of you.

– “Oh, you just have to see this hilarious picture I saw this morning!” is a typical greeting to your friends, followed by 3 minutes spent locating said picture.

I was guilty of all of these. Sure, it’s easy to justify your cell phone addiction, but when you reach the points mentioned above it’s time to decide if you really have an addiction!

If you’re having a hard time deciding whether or not to unplug, try thinking of all the time you’ll save by not being constantly attached to your phone.

In the 20 minutes I spent every morning on Facebook, I could have been doing a number of things, including:

1. Taking my dog for a walk around the neighborhood (twice).
2. Eating a healthy breakfast and preparing lunch.
3. Working out.
4. Getting in the zone with some Yoga.

Really, the possibilities are endless. What would you do with an extra 20 minutes in the morning?

Life isn’t fun when it’s all work; the hardest part about time-wasters is deciding which ones are necessary to your mental well being. I’d love to hear from readers about which diversions you like to engage in to de-stress, as well as which time-wasters you eliminated from your life!

*I don’t hate Facebook by any means; I just hate how I was using it!


Alexandra DeLuise Head ShotAlexandra DeLuise
Alexandra is the creator of Real Simple Finances, a personal finance blog for real people. Alexandra will be receiving her Master of Arts in English this December, after which she hopes to become a professor and instill good grammar and a love for Virginia Woolf in all her students. Alexandra can be found on Twitter @RSFAlexandra.

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