Everyone wants to make the most of the workday, but there are several bad work habits—like constantly checking Facebook or neglecting to make to-do lists—that many people form that keep them from being as productive as they’d like to be. Here are six of them:
1. Checking Your Personal Facebook
While social media has become an integral part of corporate marketing and customer engagement, your personal accounts can wait. Scrolling through Instagram or catching up on your Facebook newsfeed only distracts you during the workday. “Use a website blocker service to prevent you from accessing your personal sites both on the computer and any mobile devices you may have with you,”
2. Staying Late
Dedication at work is crucial to doing a good job, but being available 24/7 can quickly lead to burnout,v Henwood warns. “Don’t allow yourself to come to work extra early or stay at work extra late when it really isn’t necessary,” she says. “If you stay focused and committed during work hours, it should be easier to finish tasks so that you don’t have to stay late.”
3. Not Making a To-Do List
If you trust yourself to remember every task from memory alone, you’re likely setting yourself up to forget something important. “Even with a really good memory, you still might have trouble maintaining proper prioritization,” Henwood says. “You might miss tasks or fail to do the more important ones before the less important ones.” Instead, she suggests using a task-tracking app so you can always see and update your to-do list.
4. Skipping Lunch
Everyone has days where making time for lunch just doesn’t seem possible. However, failing to properly fuel your body leaves you exhausted and unproductive. Find time to eat something every day, but make sure it’s helping your body, not dragging you down, Henwood warns. “Eat lunch, but avoid anything unhealthy or heavy,” she says. “If you eat too much or choose anything too unhealthy, you risk experiencing the opposite effect where you become more tired.”
5. Keeping to Yourself
Your coworkers don’t have to be your best friends, but it’s important to interact and form relationships with them. “You can lose touch with your purpose and motivation when you stay isolated in your own space,” Henwood explains. “It can cause you to feel lonely and even lower your mood and productivity.” She suggests finding moments to chat and catch up with your colleagues, such as in the break room or while grabbing a cup of coffee.
6. Not Asking for Help
“There will be times when you’ll hit a roadblock in one or more assignments,” Henwood says. ”You shouldn’t just guess or leave it undone because that can lead to errors.” If you’re truly stuck, don’t try and solve the problem yourself and risk screwing up. Instead, reach out to a co-worker or your boss—chances are, they’ll be happy to help.