All we lowly office workers know the peril when THAT part of the day strikes. You know the part I’m referring to, when all chance at productivity goes out the window and you are just left with mind numbing boredom or even worse, sanity crumbling hyperactivity. There are many different incarnations of this in an office which make it particularly tricky to evade.
From good old regular This Task Is So Menial I Want to Bludgeon Myself type boredom to I Am So Hungry That I Would Eat Out of the Garbage. Then there’s the old faithful Three Thirty-it is. It kicks in and you literally feel the last dregs of your productivity being yanked away like a band aide on a particularly hairy patch of skin.
Usually the level of unproductivity is directly proportional to the time of day and the level of hunger you are currently experiencing. If you also happen to be in the middle of particularly menial task in that moment then that my friends is known as the Trifecta of Tedium, Puppy Tears and All Other Bad Things.
I have included a very scientific graph to prove how intense, devastating and not to mention scientific my findings are.
As you can clearly see, the boredom levels are quite staggering as the day progresses. This is a national epidemic and I for one think that it’s time somebody did something about it. That is precisely why I have taken it upon myself to advocate for this important cause.
I have devised this list of sure fire ways to beating boredom in the workplace and therefore ensuring that productivity levels remain relatively intact. If not at least enjoyment will be restored and really, that’s the most important part of all right? This list will assist you personally while also involving, engaging and entertaining all of you co-workers in the immediate vicinity. I like to think of it as my personal contribution to Paying it Forward.
1. Raid the stationary cupboard for things like pens, paper clips, highlighters and Post-it notes. Then proceed to skip around the office and fling the stationary at your co-workers. This will not only provide a respite from work for you but you will also be assisting everyone by throwing them stationary that they probably already needed. They will be grateful for your smart thinking and kindness. (NOTE: Avoid any and all objects that are sharp and/or heavy like thumb tacks, scissors and staplers. We want to cause joy not blunt force trauma and bleeding.)
2. Tell your boss that you haven’t stretched yourself yet today and to avoid any Repetitive Strain Injuries, and to adhere with Workplace Healthy and Safety procedures, you should probably get away from your desk for a few minutes. Your boss will be impressed with your initiative and desire to follow work safety standards. You then run laps around the office while simultaneously singing Eye of the Tiger to all your fellow employees. This has the dual effect of getting your daily cardio in and also pumping everybody up to keep working hard by singing one of the most motivational songs in the history of time and space. Even if people aren’t actually pumped up to do any more work at the very least it will get them all singing along to Eye of the Tiger so it’s definitely a win either way.
3. Curbing those afternoon hunger pangs can be the worst part of anybody’s day. Take some initiative to create a fun snack for everyone in your office. Go to the nearest vending mention and using the copy of the janitor’s key that you had made, drain it of all its chocolate and candy. You then use all this vending machine loot to build a candy tower of sheer awesomeness at your desk. This one is especially impressive because it not only keeps you busy it also amuses everyone while also providing them all with a snack. If your boss tries to tell you that this is highly inappropriate, you hit them with this truth bomb- “I’m sorry but I can’t hear you over all my splendour”. They will immediately retreat and concede that you are indeed splendid and omnipotent.
You should probably get some kind of recognition or medal for your herculean efforts at deposing the very real threat that is workplace unproductivity but you are far too modest to accept an award like that. Besides you did it for the noble purpose of greater good and that is reward enough for you.
Disclaimer: If you happen to get into trouble (or fired) for doing any of the aforementioned things I cannot be held liable for any damages. You brought it on yourself.