How to Waste Time

Time is the only thing we can measure, save, sell and buy -- but we cannot see it, touch it, hear it, or ever have enough of it. For this reason, wasting time (not to be confused with killing time) is something reserved for when you have already completed everything you've set out to do. If you want to be as anti-productive as possible, you've come to the perfect place.


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    Make a plan. Set down whatever it is you should be doing and start planning something better. There are so many situations you're just not ready for! Here are some ideas:
    • How to redecorate your bedroom
    • Your next convo with Kim-Jong Un.
    • Your next vacation
    • How you'd take over the world
    • What you could do under threat of zombie attack
      • Okay, but seriously. If zombies were to attack, which of your friends would you just have to leave behind because they'd slow you down? What skills should you start working on now just in case? You gotta be useful if and when the time comes.
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    Calculate some numbers. What if the digits in your Social Security number equal 66? You probably don't know if they do, do you? Well find out! Here's a list of other things you could start calculating:
    • Your budget
    • How many minutes you've been alive or the amount until your birthday/Christmas, etc.
    • Just what percent of $1 million you would give your loved ones and/or charity
    • How many people you meet per year and what percentage of them you actually like
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    Imagine a crazy scenario. You can truly let your mind wander with this and hopefully stumble upon some veritable mind gold. Sure, you've imagined yourself as a billionaire, as yachting in the Mediterranean with the Kardashians, as having your dream job, but have you tried really stretching the limits of your creativity?
    • Imagine that you get locked in the bathroom sometime in the next thirty minutes. How do you get out?
    • Imagine that you have to teach a bear to dance or else. What's your teaching methodology?
    • Imagine if you turned into a werewolf right now. What would be the first thing you'd probably do? Werewolves have little impulse control, so it's important to stay realistic.
    • Imagine having to go hunt or gather your lunch. What would you end up eating?
    • Imagine everyone around you wearing kilts. After all, why not?
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    Make lists. We're not talking about what you need at the grocery store -- that'd actually be useful -- we're talking about all these preferences you don't know you actually have. Consider the following:
    • Make a list of all the words you can make with your name
    • Make a list of the ten most attractive people you know
    • Make a list of the ten ugliest people you know
    • Make a list of questions you'd like the answers to
    • Make a list of your most impressive moments
    • Make a list of the things you'd do and/or people you'd arrest if given dictatorial powers
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    Memorize something. The first 36 digits of pi? As simple as the Fibonacci sequence. Here are a few things you could get to knowing like the back of your hand (if you have that memorized, that is):
    • The order of the books of the Bible
    • The succession of the Kings of England
    • The dates and verdicts of the most influential supreme court cases
    • The lyrics to "Gangsta's Paradise"
      • Who are we kidding? These are all totally useful.
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    Conjure up old memories. Take a minute to sit back, relax, and remember your glory days. They're there somewhere, right?
    • Try to remember everyone on your bus this morning, or your commute to work. What details can you recall?
    • Recreate your bedroom in your head. What spots are curiously empty?
    • Remember what your best friends looked like when they were younger and your fondest memories together
    • Recall the last time you complimented/shouted at/laughed at/helped out someone
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    Challenge yourself. Who needs other people? You can just challenge yourself! Best your own abilities! Try these on for size:
    • See how long you can go without blinking/breathing/talking/using the letter "n," etc.
    • See how many times you can fold a piece of paper
    • See how well you can balance -- on your toes, a house of cards, a lonely game of Jenga, etc.
    • See how easily embarrassed you can get by publicly imitating an animal, walking around with your clothes on backwards, or singing near the top of your lungs.
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    Invent new uses for the objects around you. That lamp on your desk? It's not just for light -- it's a hat. And that stapler is very clearly a maraca. Get to actually thinking about your environment. What have you been just taking at face value?
    • That computer charger of yours? A new-age necklace or belt. But it's not just clothes -- that painting is a table, your clock is a frisbee and those ingredients in your kitchen are just asking to be in an invented-by-you recipe.
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    Start useless arguments. "Stalin was just the best ever" or "People just don't understand the anachronistic cultural significance behind The Bachelorette" oughta do it. Just be sure you can keep a straight face and pick a topic people don't know you're pulling their legs on.
    • If you're a staunch hipster, don't go rambling about how Starbucks is God's gift to capitalism. Pick something believable so people actually argue with you.
    • Be warned that this may (read: definitely will) cause problems if you don't handle it with kid gloves. Some people may never think the same of you again if you spend 5 minutes on a soapbox dedicated to how you plan on donating to Honey Boo Boo's college fund. Or, you know, spouting off religious/political/economic views you don't actually believe in.
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    Get on your computer. Now it's time to get real: the Internet was invented as a means to waste time. If we had a list on here of the ways it was possible, you'd be stuck in an infinite loop of anti-productivity.
    • Read blogs. There's a blog out there about everything. There's even lists you can refer to to weed through all the teenage-y Wordpresses and get straight to the gems.
    • Take some online quizzes, tests, surveys, or play some games. As if Facebook didn't alert you to all the ones trending already.
    • Diagnose yourself on WebMD. Just be sure your phone is handy so you can call mom when you get really freaked out.
    • You could read the news, but that'd just make too much sense.
    • If those are too obvious, you could always defragment your hard drive and watch it till it completes. This takes aaaaages. Scanning for errors and backing up your files is also good for wasting time.
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    Take the wikiHow challenge. wikiHow is not a part of the Internet; it's more than that, hence its own step. But you already knew that. So why get sucked into the perils and mere adequacies of cyberspace when you can stay right here and benefit from it? Are you ready? Challenge extended:
    • How long does it take you to get from How to Shower to How to Regain Control of a Spooked Camel? How about from How to Apply Makeup Like Flo, the Progressive Girl to How to Improve Your Personality Using wikiHow?
      • Remember, you can only click on wiki links on the page you're looking at. Like the wikipedia game, but way more entertaining on the whole.
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    Play pranks. Again, this can be dangerous if not done carefully. You want to make sure you're pranking the right people at the right time. Once you're sure, what items of theirs would float in Jell-O? Hmm.
    • Think outside of the box! Lemon juice on the toothbrush? Rearranging their desk so everything is 2 inches (5.1 cm) to the left? Something that just gets glitter everywhere? Some pranks require obtaining supplies -- exactly how much time do you have to waste?
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    Do everything in slow-motion. Ten bucks says you'll get annoyed with yourself before anyone else does. But you could give it a go anyway! Good luck pouring that cup of coffee!
    • If slow-motion ain't your bag, try doing everything backwards. Talking backwards, walking backwards, you name it (eating backwards?). Or everything opposite. What's the opposite of reading wikiHow articles?
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    Annoy your friends. You could spend hours on this site learning ways to annoy people that will make you seriously question whether or not your entire life has been a waste of time up until this very point. What are you waiting for? Forget memorizing pi -- you've got some being obnoxious to do.
    • Okay, when we say "annoy," we mean in a light-hearted, fun manner. We mean pretending you're a mime every hour on the hour -- not being purposefully late to meet up with your friends just to be a nuisance. We mean talking to the stuffed monkeys at the history museum, not rearranging them and getting booted out. Have fun with it. Fun where the consequences might be an eye roll or a shove and a laugh, not getting yelled at or escorted out.
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    Think of a different way to do everything. Humans are programmed do things as efficiently as possible -- at least, in most situations. You've probably figured out this life thing by now, but what are other ways you could go about accomplishing things?
    • How could you wake yourself up in the morning without an alarm?
    • How could you get a message to your friend without using your phone or your computer?
    • How could you get from here to the kitchen without touching the ground?
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    Do something just to undo it. Dig a hole and then fill it up again. Rearrange your books by author and then by cover color. Make your bed and then jump on it. Write that wikiHow article you've been dying to publish and then erase it before hitting "submit." The world is your oyster. If you're a little twisted, that is.
    • This is the ultimate waste of time. So go rearrange all the cupboards even though mom is going to make you change them back tonight. Paint a picture and then paint over it. Make all the sarcastic edits you want to the first wikiHow article that comes up when you hit "Random Article" and then roll them back yourself. Because...why not?
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    Read the entirety of this article. Congratulations! You've reached the bottom of this article! You've officially wasted 20 minutes trying to waste time! You didn't even know you were wasting time while you were wasting it! So meta. It's a nirvana for the technological age, really. How does it feel? Would you do it again, if you could?
    • It's fine if your answer is "no." You've probably got things to do now. Homework? Showering? Saving the world? So go forth, Timewaster, with the new knowledge that time is your slave. You can do with it as you please.


  • Try to have a conversation with yourself: Find out things about yourself you never knew!
  • Repeat words until they lose meaning: Make the entire world lose all meaning! People may also give you a strange look.
  • Hide money: Grab a few pennies, and stuff them in places only little kids look.
  • Go on the Internet and find games, make a website, or even correct WikiHow pages. Google everything you can, and search for your favorite TV shows on IMDB or Wikipedia.
  • If someone asks you what you are doing, respond with 'I was just thinking about how our global economy has been in decline for the last decade, and how greenhouse gasses are destroying the ozone layer' -- nobody will bother you and will let you continue to waste time by looking off into space...they will think you are formulating a way to stop those pesky greenhouse gasses and will let you do your scientific and political pondering.
  • No matter what, do NOT look at the clock. This will make time go much, much slower. In fact, it would be best to cover all the nearby clocks so you cannot see them at all until you are done wasting time. (Note: don't do it if you really need to be on time, but it takes so long until the time you want, it could make you late)
  • Set a personal best time record for holding your breath: And then break your record. Do it again and again.
  • Think about thoughts: how do they work so well; how does your brain fill up with so much information?
  • Try burning bubbles: Blow a few soap bubbles by blowing through a straw into a cup of soap and water, and light it up! Best done outside.
  • Daydream: Think about the "IF" in your life.Then when you're done, think about the "LE" in your life!
  • Stare intensely at anything if you are at work or at school while you are supposed to be doing paperwork or whatever. People will see you staring at something and think that you are pondering about something.
  • Look at the sky: Go outside and find strange looking clouds or try to find the hidden UFO.
  • Try to do something hard but impressive, like practicing doing one armed pushups.
  • Go on Tumblr. Register, follow some people, and scroll for hours.
  • Play table tennis against the wall.
  • Click pictures of mundane things around you, in different/new angles.
  • Reread this article and see how long it takes to memorize it all. Then put it to use. You waste triple the time!
  • Idle hands are great. Move around and look busy!
  • Sleeping is always a possibility. It re-freshens your body and mind, too.
  • Go on the Internet. The Internet is a very efficient way to waste time.
  • You could waste your time easily only maybe waste time in your computer like investigate your computer or games if your a child .
    • Just look outside the window, you'll be surprised what you see and haven't noticed for days!


  • Wasting time may cause feelings of depression, loneliness or isolation, combined with a crippling low-self esteem and disappointment in yourself.
  • Wasting too much time will prevent you from doing useful things. Do the useful things first, and waste time later.
  • Wasting time is not good because you could do useful things like washing the dishes or cleaning the house.
  • Remember the time that you wasted you can never get back. Life is shorter than you think.
  • Wasting too much time, especially on the internet, may lead to a lack of a social life.
  • Wasting too much time at school or college will get you in trouble and possibly even kicked out.
  • Wasting too much time at work may get you fired.

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Categories: Hobbies and Crafts