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Tips on How to be Productive in Your Spare Time



Last Updated on August 23, 2022 by Ben Oakley

You don’t need to be productive in your spare time, but you can make the most of it to improve productivity in other parts of your life.

Tips on How to be Productive in Your Spare Time

There is a school of thought that suggests your spare time should be spent doing absolutely nothing.

While that may work out well for some, if you’re looking to improve your productivity then your spare time is important.

To be successful in online publishing, writing, blogging, and marketing, you really need to narrow down your skills. Sometimes, it’s what you do in your spare time that makes the difference of how you work – and live!

What is spare time?

Sounds simple enough but spare time covers a whole range of different moments throughout the day.

It could be as simple as having ten minutes spare between meetings, or a day off between writing chapters of a book. It could even be working out ways to utilise your time on public transport.

The following tips on how to be more productive in your spare time won’t work for every individual situation. But the truth is, you may just find something down below that really does work for you.

Physical exercise

Before you run for the door, hear me out!

Physical exercise doesn’t always mean spending two hours in the gym or running ten miles at dawn. We have the luxury of using our own bodies to exercise, meaning we can do it anywhere.

Of course, doing either of those activities in your spare time is one of the best ways to improve productivity in your life and in work.

Exercise is proven to assist in better health. Better health means a better work/life split.

Things you can do if you only have ten minutes spare:

  • Bodyweight exercises
  • Stretching
  • Jogging on the spot
  • Impromptu dancing (preferably in private)

Reading a book

It’s the age-old go-to spare time function for most people.

The truth is it works. And if you choose the right book to read, you can learn and gain knowledge at the same time.

In addition to reading books, reading well-written articles can help add to your knowledgebase.

To maximise your reading potential, get your hands on a Kindle. Sign up to Kindle Unlimited, and you will have millions of books at your fingerprints, in every category imaginable.

No excuses now!

Listening to a podcast

Though podcasts have been around forever it seems, they have taken on a new lease of life in the past decade.

In the UK, approximately 21million people have listened to a podcast. In the U.S, almost 40% of the population listen to a podcast on a regular basis.

Whether you like true crime podcasts or general conversation ones, there is literally a podcast for everyone in the world right now.

And like books, you can learn something along the way – to add to your arsenal of knowledge.

Tips on How to be Productive in Your Spare Time

Take a holiday

Have plenty of spare time? Great – go on holiday, that’s an order!

In recent years, the price of holidaying abroad has skyrocketed but there are still bargains out there.

It’s not all about experiencing new locations and cultures, sometimes a break away from work and life is just what the doctor ordered.

For many of the world’s top businesspeople, holidaying in other countries is among their favourite pastimes. Sure, they can afford it, but with the right amount of planning, you can too.

Travel is the only thing you buy that genuinely makes you richer.


These days, most business is carried out online. Digital publishing, blogging, and most day-to-day marketing strategies are very much exclusive to the online world.

Where social media has made connecting with others easier, it does take away from that real-life face-to-face interaction.

Humans are social creatures, so as you progress through your career – and life – it’s important to remember that socialising is as important as a good sleep schedule.

Socialising with others has long been linked to better health and a longer life. As we’ve seen up above, better health = higher productivity!

A quick chat with the person preparing your coffee in the cafe, or a brief conversation with a neighbour, can both help boost your social standing and your productivity.

Taking care of your mental health

Your mental health is as important as your physical health, if not more so. Here are some skills you can learn to help take care of your mental health.

If you’ve never practiced deep breathing before, not only can it be good for your mental health, but it can also help relieve stress.

Here are 10 life hacks to help improve your writing and your mental health. Reflecting on your daily successes, no matter how small, is another way to help with your mental health.

Prepare for the following day

I know, developing a schedule should be done as part of your day-to-day activities. However, if you struggle with keeping a schedule, then curating it in your spare time can help improve it.

Prepping a schedule outside of your actual schedule allows you to step back and look at things from a different perspective.

Being productive in your spare time to help boost productivity during your working hours is the most productive thing you can do. Try saying that after a bottle of wine!

Clean up your workspace

Not wanting to sound like a nagging boss, but a clean workspace can help with both your mental health and productivity.

Here are some benefits of having a clean and tidy workspace.

  • Inspires confidence in you and your abilities
  • Less stress!
  • Healthier workspace
  • Better work environment
  • Easier to work!

Something as simple as cleaning your keyboard can help improve your working environment.

Other ideas include going complete paperless (as much as possible), no food at the computer, washing hands regularly, and using air fresheners.

Being productive in your spare time doesn’t have to be taxing, but with the right attitude and adjustment, it might just change your life – and work output – for the better.

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Ben Oakley is a bestselling author, researcher, publisher, blogger, and mental health advocate from Camden, England. Usually found on Twitter or in the bars and parks of Camden. Agathokakological is his favourite word!