How Much Time Do At Home Workers Waste?

What happened to the day? Where did all that time go? You woke up with a fire in your belly to work hard and get ahead for the day. The next thing you know, you are sitting at your desk and wondering how it got so dark outside all of a sudden. You look at the clock and realize that ten hours have passed since you woke up. This happens to many people, and those who work at home find that it happens to them quite frequently. Many time wasters can grab hold of you and not let go, and since you don’t have a boss at home, other than you, it means that you don’t have anyone to drag you away from these behaviors.

Let’s look some of the most problematic time wasters that people who work at home have to face. Knowing them can help you to avoid them and recognize when they start to grab you.

Keeping Up Around the House

When you work from home, you are always at work and you are always at home. It’s a strange life to live, and it can actually cause quite a few issues when it comes to wasting time. For example, you might wake up ready to start work and then realize that you need to wash a pan from the night before, or that you need to do some laundry. All of these chores can get in the way of actually working. However, you can’t engage in these activities, even though you are technically at home. You have to be your own boss and tell yourself that you are at work. You can do the chores after you finish work.


We’re not talking about going out and hanging 10 at the beach. We’re talking about modern web surfing, the bane of workers everywhere. When you wonder where your day went, there’s a very good chance that it went to the web. Some workers may need to use the web to do research, but this is tricky. You want to research only the items you need to know, and you need to make sure that you don’t get sucked down into Google looking up different interesting sites, pictures of cats, and the like. YouTube is another time waster that you certainly want to avoid on the web, at least until you have some free time.

Since it’s so easy to shop online, you might decide that you want to take just a few minutes to pick up something online. It could be a gift, something on sale, or something that you simply remembered you wanted to buy. Be careful. When you start shopping online, a five minute task can turn into an hour long hunt as you start seeing more interesting items and bargains. Wait until the end of the day and then shop.

Get Off the Social Media

Whether you are on your phone, tablet, or computer, you have to limit your time on social networks. This can be difficult when social media is a part of your home business though. You have to use the site as a tool only, and not as a distraction. Check the sites once or twice a day for business, and limit your time to fifteen minutes when you do. It’s a good idea to set up a timer on your computer so you know when the fifteen minutes are up. Otherwise, it could latch hold of you for an hour or more without you realizing it.

No More Checking Email

Another time waster of the home worker is checking email. Since they often have to work with clients and are looking for customers, email is very important. It’s how they connect. However, if you are constantly checking, reading, and writing emails whenever you receive a notification, it will cause nothing but headaches and wasted time. Instead, schedule a couple of times through the day when you can check your email and answer it. A good option might be to schedule it the same time that you schedule your social media time for business.

The Friends and Family

Unfortunately, many of your family and friends who don’t work from home have no idea just what it takes. This often means that they will call or stop by the house, or invite you out to lunch without realizing that it really is an inconvenience for you. They would not do this if you had a regular 9 to 5, so you have to remind them that you really don’t have the time to step away from work. You are trying to make a living. This means that you should implement a closed door policy during the hours you work, and only be available for emergencies.

Trying to Do Too Much

This is a culprit that can waste time and cause stress. When you try to do too much to help your clients or customers, it might seem like a nice gesture and one that any hardworking businessperson would do. However, you need to know your limits. Taking on too much could mean that you aren’t able to give all tasks your full attention. It could mean more stress, and that could lead to health problems that could take you away from work for even longer. Don’t overextend yourself, and don’t get into the habit of trying to multitask. Both are more trouble than they are worth.

Breaks and Lunch

Since you don’t have a boss coming after you to get back to work after you take a break of have your lunch, it often means that you take a few more minutes here and there. What you are actually doing is stealing from yourself. You are stealing time and money. Think about it. If you take an extra ten minutes at lunch and during your breaks, you could be tacking on an additional half hour to your day each day. By sticking to your schedule and adhering to a normal break time, it instills in your mind the fact that you are actually at work.


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