Solve problems thanks to waiting time: 6 tips to use dead time more effectively

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We all do it daily and are constantly annoyed: wait. On something or somebody. How can you bridge such dead times? Or: Does not it make sense?

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Simone Janson Simone JansonSimone Janson is publisherConsultant and head of the Institute's job pictures Yourweb.


One-third of life goes by for a wait

I have often heard or read that one obviously spends a third of his life waiting: for example, waiting for the bus, train, the plane, at the cash register.

That such waiting times have positive effects can be seen at the latest when one deals with how actually problems are solved. Because then it quickly becomes clear: Much does not always help a lot. In other words, when it comes to problem solving, it is worthwhile to take a breather from time to time and just switch off.

Problems do not dissolve through reflection

To look around, to deal with something else, to do something beautiful. Surprisingly, scientists have not only found that problems sometimes resolve themselves because the brain processes the information.

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But also: the more we think, the more tired our brain becomes - and the bigger the imagined problem becomes. And that's what happens in the video above: We do not stop thinking about something, we're completely irrational in a circle - even if we do not really want that. Therefore, it makes sense to switch off more often!

6 tips for useful bridging of waiting times

However, technological progress allows us to make more or less use of these actually useful waiting times. For those who do not want to switch off, so an overview of the most practical waiting jumper:

  1. On the plane: Flying is my time waster No. 1. Not because of the waiting time, but because of the numerous work interruptions. There are: 40 minutes drive to the airport. Interruption due to check-in and security. Then usually again about 1 hour work. Work stoppage due to boarding and start-up, during which one must leave computers and other equipment switched off. I have become accustomed to reading newspapers during this time. There are further interruptions in the plane, while food and drinks are distributed, but also by the narrowness of the plane, not to speak of non-existing sockets and Internet. A good third of the working time is lost in this way, depending on the duration of the flight. The rest of the flight I use, however, as a rule, to type texts for which I do not need the Internet. Luckily, you do not fly so often.
  2. In the train: The Sales Director of Google Ireland she said in the interview: she checks her every morning on the one-hour train ride to work eMails. She can go home for 16 or 17 clock. Train driving is far better than flying to work and thus bridging waiting times. There are laptop workstations, power sockets, sometimes internet and space. In terms of efficiency, the plane is therefore clearly behind the train for me. But sometimes that too exhausting.
  3. Bus and train driving: That's something I see every day: people are constantly busy with their mobile phones on the platform, in the buses and on the trains. Much of this may not make sense, but I admit: I also find it convenient, my eMails and the social media channels on the go sometimes on the phone to check and possibly synonymous short to answer. That's no problem with a good smartphone.
  4. Waiting at the cash register: It would be too stressful for me, between the jostling Hintermann and the stressed cashier, who can not put the things on the tape fast enough to do anything fast. But some people can do that as well: they send text messages or phone calls until the phone gets in the way of payment. Also a possibility.
  5. Use waiting times for knowledge management: Being well informed is important for your career. Therefore, much is talked about knowledge management, finding and managing information. But contrary to popular belief, there is no need for complicated tools and techniques to manage knowledge, because that can be quite simple - just talking to people. Small talk. From this point of view, small-talc has two advantages: you make yourself known to other people and collect important information. My contribution to Imgriff shows how it works.
  6. Waiting time as a break welcome: I sometimes have the suspicion that it is precisely this stress that we create by trying to use the apparently dead waiting time sensibly and effectively at all costs that gives us the stress that we actually want to combat with it. And that we would do better to look out the window on the train and talk to our neighbors on the bus, because we need exactly these breaks as necessary regeneration phases.

Make good use of dead waiting times or not?

I confess that I am also one of those who like to do something useful in dead times. Personally, it “de-stresses” me more of having done something again. Everyone is different.

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