Six Things to Do When Bored at Work

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I saw a post on YAM a few weeks ago that discussed things to do when bored at work. They had some great ideas such as getting ahead on your work or asking for more work. Depending on the job that you have you can do those things and eventually still become bored. Today, I have a post discussing six things that you can do when bored at work. None of these things are too crazy.


The first thing that you can do at work if you have downtime is to ask your manager if they would allow you to cross-train with another department. I know this isn’t possible at every job or company, but it never hurts to ask. Your boss may be pleasantly surprised that you asked and that could lead to bigger things for you. In previous jobs, I’ve had the time to cross-train in multiple areas. I think I became a better employee because of that.

Contact your manager and let them know that you want to learn more about other aspects of the job. Doing that may allow you to move up faster or even get a raise. Managers love it when their employees take initiative. Cross-training is doing just that.

Work On Blog Related Things

The second thing that you can do at work if you are bored at work is to do some blog-related things (if you are a blogger). I’ve read that several bloggers who still work a regular job use some of their downtime to write and edit posts. Heck, the 1st draft of this article was written while I was at work. Something else that bloggers including myself do is read other blogs and leave comments during this time. If you’re not a blogger yet, have you thought about it? I’ve been blogging for 6 years now. It’s changed my life. My blog has allowed me to start a side business and meet some great people in the process. If you are considering it, check out my post titled How to Start a Blog. I go into detail about what you need to do when starting a blog. I also explain why I recommend Bluehost for your hosting. Blogging has changed my life. It can do the same for you.

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Listen to Podcasts

The third thing that you can do if you are bored at work is to listen to podcasts. I love music as much as the next person, but I can only listen to so much 2pac or Jeezy. I think I’m better off listening to podcasts that motivate me to do better. Below are 5 podcasts that I listen to from time to time. They talk about personal finance, entrepreneurship, side hustles, and more.

Side Hustle Nation

Smart Passive Income

His and Her Money


Shop My Closet

When you get a chance, check them out. I’m sure you will enjoy them as well. If you don’t want to listen to podcasts about money, that’s fine. There are hundreds of different podcasts available out there.

Work on Side Hustles

Number four on the list is to work on a side hustle. If you have a family, your job (during downtime) may be the place to work on a side hustle. You don’t have much time to do it at home so use this time wisely. Depending on what your side hustle is you may be able to get quite a few things accomplished. If you don’t have a side hustle yet, there are many to choose from. Below are a few that you should check out.

Check out Inbox Dollars and Survey Junkie if you want to make money completing online surveys.

If surveys aren’t your thing, check out the post below.

40+ Ways to Make Extra Money This Month 

Enter Giveaways

The fifth thing on the list is to enter giveaways. This is another item on the list that I’ve done. I’ve taken 30-45 minutes a few times to enter a few of them (still didn’t win finally won one a few weeks ago). Most of the ones that I’ve entered only ask for your name and e-mail address. I actually created a separate e-mail address just for giveaways. I don’t do this as much as I used to, but it’s time to test my luck again.

There’s nothing like winning free items. You can keep the prize for yourself, give it away as a gift to someone, or you can flip it. I’ve won different things over the years including kitchen supplies and a tablet. Instead of keeping the items for myself, I flipped them on eBay. You can do the same thing if you are looking for extra money.

Apply For Other Jobs

The sixth and final thing on the list of things to do when bored at work is to apply for other jobs. Some people enjoy having downtime at work while others absolutely hate it. Some people would rather have constant work all the time. If you’re one of those people or you’d just rather do something else, then this is the perfect time to start applying for other gigs. Over the years, I’ve known many people to apply for jobs during their work hours. All I can say is that if you’re in that situation you might as well use your time productively. Make sure that your resume is up to date. Also, make sure that you don’t get caught by your manager when you’re applying for other jobs.

If you plan to save a resume or cover letter on your computer, be careful. It may be best to save it you your Google drive.

To summarize, the six things to do if you’re bored at work are to cross-train, work on blog related things, listen to podcasts, work on side hustles, enter giveaways and apply for other jobs. I do want to state ONLY do these things if you have downtime at your job. I don’t want anybody to get written up or fired for doing any of these things during your peak work times. Below are a couple of bored at work meme’s that I saw online and wanted to share with you.

Do you want to create your own meme? Take a look at the meme generator.

How do you handle downtime at your job? Do you just stare into space or do you find something productive to do? Which one of these is your favorite bored at work meme?




  1. Great ideas….

  2. The only job I can recall having any down time was my stint at Dairy Queen when business was slow. I was 14… I think I spent my down time eating hot fudge sundaes! They were free…. LOL

  3. Thanks for the shout out! I always find something productive to do, and I generally wouldn’t recommend entering giveaways, working on your blog, or applying to other jobs. If you get caught doing any of those three things you really lose trust. I would recommend focusing on your job and how you can get better at it. I do think jotting down blog ideas is fair game or working on putting together your to do list for when you’re off work, but bloggers especially need to make sure they never compromise the trust of their employer while they are at work.

  4. I like to read other blogs and comment during my down time at work or on my lunch break. Unfortunately, thins have been crazy busy at my job these past few weeks and January is our biggest month since everybody wants a new website for the new year. Downtime for me at work is during the spring and while fast-paced does help the day go by faster, I can’t wait, haha.

  5. Great list. I also suggest having a thought notebook for when you can’t turn the ideas about your side hustle off. Jotting down a few sentences can capture the thought or idea.

  6. Yikes! As a former HR Director, I like your first suggestion best. 🙂
    In the few times I was bored with work, I taught myself software that I didn’t know. It came in handy for when the real job began.
    Glad you didn’t mention the one I used to see all too often in my corporate work: Wander around and distract people who are trying to work!

    I couldn’t take the boredom, either, and would be looking for a more challenging job.

  7. Great suggestions. When there is downtime, I do love a good podcast. My favorite is Smart Passive Income and Social Media Examiner. I also update the blog and website.

    1. I love Smart Passive Income. Pat Flynn is the truth.

  8. Most of your suggestions are reasonable. However, some employers would go ballistic if they found out you were job hunting at work, even during downtime – you should be v-e-r-y careful about doing this. It is best to stick to surfing the Web, listening to music (using headphones of course), or something work-related.

  9. Ken Dowell says:

    Many employers will of course take the position that you should never have any downtime. And most employers are wrong. One of my favorite approaches to this came from a guy who ran a tech department in Minneapolis. He told me that he insisted that his employees use at least 10 percent of their time to try to think of new stuff to do.

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