Home Blog 14 Ways to Stay Productive When You’re Bored at Work

14 Ways to Stay Productive When You’re Bored at Work

Photo of Andy Cakebread Andy Cakebread 06 October 2023
Bored Curly-Haired Woman Holding a Coffee Mug

Ever glanced at the clock, convinced it’s been hours, only to find out a mere five minutes have passed? Or maybe you’ve found yourself lost in the depths of your chair, eyes glazing over the umpteenth spreadsheet? You’re not alone. We all face workplace boredom from time to time.

But here’s the catch – these moments of tedium aren’t just silent nudges for a coffee break, they’re opportunities in disguise. Every lull, every yawn-inducing task, is your golden ticket to rethink work and enhance job satisfaction.

So, if you’re ready to transform that midday slump into a productivity surge, join Thankbox as we dive into 14 game-changing strategies. So, close Minesweeper (it’s impossible anyway) and let’s get started!

14 things you can do when you’re bored at work

Before you delve into our tips, let’s address the social media elephant in the room. Yes, scrolling through your feeds can momentarily dissolve boredom but it won’t help with your professional development in the long run. 

Instead of falling into a well of ‘The Office’ memes, why not channel your spare moments into something productive? 

Let’s check out some boredom-repelling tips: 

1. Build bonds in the office

Take a moment to chat with a colleague during coffee breaks or team meetings. It’s more than just being social – it’s about building a supportive workspace. Cultivating personal ties elevates staff morale, paving the way to the Holy Grail of any company – happy employees and a healthy business.

While face-to-face interactions play a huge role, there are fun and innovative tools available to enhance this bonding. Enter Thankbox

Thankbox lets you send group e-cards that you and your coworkers can fill with personalised messages, GIFs, and even group contributions for gift cards. If you’re wondering if Thankbox has your favourite Nicolas Cage GIFs? The answer is resounding, “Yes!”

An image of a sample Thankbox card showing appreciation to someone

Thankbox is a quick and easy way to show that you care in bustling office environments. Using such thoughtful tools sends a clear message that you recognise and appreciate your colleagues. The cherry on top? It only takes a few minutes!

Thankbox smiling sun icon Find Your New You Now!

Recognising, celebrating and appreciating coworkers will inject energy and dynamism into the workplace immediately. Get started in seconds and witness the transformation.

2. Reassess your goals

Ever felt like you’re running on a treadmill, going nowhere fast? Maybe it’s time to hit the pause button. Dive into what drives you – both personally and professionally. Are your goals still lighting that fire within? If they’re not, it’s the perfect time to find new ones.

3. Declutter your desk

We’ve all been there – staring at a cluttered desk, wondering if we’re in the running for the “most notebooks owned by one person” world record. Well, it’s time to embrace the magic of order. Arrange those pens, organise your mountain of papers, and make space for creativity to flow. And for the love of all things digital, declutter those files and emails. 

4. Plan ahead

Flying by the seat of your pants might sound thrilling, but in the work world, it can lead to last-minute scrambles. Let’s change the narrative. Take a minute each day to plot out your game plan. What’s on the agenda for tomorrow? Next week? And rank immediate tasks.

5. Take short breaks

Man Sitting in Front of Round Table While Sipping from White Ceramic Mug

Have you ever been on the verge of a meltdown after hours of unbroken concentration? Of course, you have. Enter the Pomodoro Technique, a time management hack. The concept? Work with intense focus for 25 minutes, then take a 5-minute break. Repeat. These short, regular pauses act as mental pit stops to rejuvenate your brain.

6. Learn something new

Stagnation is the silent killer of career growth. So, why not dip your toes into current industry trends? A little research can reveal a wealth of knowledge at your fingertips. And if you’re feeling particularly ambitious, dive into online courses. These learning opportunities will not only quell your boredom but supercharge your skills too.

7. Network internally

Sure, it’s great to know the ins and outs of your team, but have you ever wondered what’s happening next door? Strike up a conversation with colleagues from different departments and lean into peer-to-peer recognition. This internal networking can uncover opportunities for collaboration that you didn’t know existed.

8. Update your CV and LinkedIn

Think of your CV and LinkedIn as your professional shopfront. Even if you aren’t actively looking for new opportunities, keeping them up-to-date showcases your evolving skills and achievements. 

9. Set daily challenges

Woman in Yellow Turtleneck Sweater Smiling

Familiarity is comfortable, but monotony? Not so much. Keep your days fresh by setting yourself small, achievable challenges. Whether you’re tackling a new task or simply switching up your routine, these daily goals spark motivation.

10. Lend a helping hand

If you see a colleague swamped with work or struggling with a task, ask yourself, “What would Ted Lasso do?” By offering a helping hand, you’re encouraging teamwork and working towards your company values. Remember, teamwork makes the dream work!

11. Listen to productivity podcasts

Plug in those headphones and dive into the world of productivity podcasts. Let experts share their golden nuggets of wisdom, offering fresh perspectives and strategies. Perhaps you’ll gain some insightful productivity hacks that you can weave into your daily routine. 

12. Prioritise health

Your desk is the ideal place for some health-focused activities. From simple stretches to quick exercises, give those muscles a little love during breaks. And if it gets a tad overwhelming – close your eyes and indulge in some meditation. 

13. Reflect on feedback

Men and Woman Discussing Project in a Sketchbook and Abstract Paintings Hanging on a Wall

Dive back into past performance reviews and view them through a fresh lens. Rather than getting bogged down by critiques, turn them into actionable steps. See every point of feedback as a stepping stone towards a better you.

14. Launch a book club

Once a month, pick out a book and turn a meeting room into a lively discussion hub. It’s not just about the books, it’s about bonding, debating, and seeing which colleague gives the best “I swear I read it” excuse. 

Wave “goodbye” to boredom with Thankbox

Let’s face it, boredom is like that pesky office printer – sometimes it just jams out of nowhere. But what sets the go-getters apart is how they channel this downtime into productivity. Remember, it’s not about eliminating boredom, but how you can harness it.

Thankbox smiling sun icon Find Your New You Now!

Recognising, celebrating and appreciating coworkers will inject energy and dynamism into the workplace immediately. Get started in seconds and witness the transformation.

Ready to transform your workplace energy? Dive into the Thankbox experience and turn idle moments into appreciative gestures. Don’t just think about it – create a Thankbox today and connect in real-time!


Images: Cover | Man with coffee | Woman with thumbs up | Group informal meeting at desk