Look, I know you love Candy Crush. We all do.
But every time I receive this Facebook notification…
[Facebook friend] invites you to play Candy Crush Saga.
…I think, “Man, what a time sucker that game is.”
The super-addictive app and its red, orange and yellow candies steal precious seconds from our day. OK, just another five minutes and then I’m done. I swear.
Well, it might be time to peel your eyes from the screen. King, the maker of Candy Crush Saga, reports people are not spending as much money on the game, which suggests its popularity is fading.
Before the next Candy Crush (like Farmville and Angry Birds before it) dominates your free time, fill the day with these useful habits. Other successful people already do.
1. Productive people network even when they have a job
They spend an extra 30 minutes at an after-work happy hour mingling and chatting. They always remember to use the six most powerful words in networking and and use free time to develop business relationships.
Plus, who doesn’t need a stiff drink after a long day?
2. They send thoughtful notes just because
A “thank you” here, a “congratulations” there… productive people send off little notes (or tweets) because they make someone’s day.
They know the power of a compliment and particularly one that’s out of the blue.
We’re all working hard out there. Sometimes it’s nice to be noticed.
3. They tinker with side hustles
Yes, it’s true: every 20-something should have a side hustle. It will teach you new skills, make you more versatile and possibly open new career options.
Mobile gaming is mindless. A side project on something you’re passionate about? That’s the brain firing on all cylinders.
4. They update their LinkedIn profiles
Productive people are keenly aware of how they look to other people. When they have a few minutes to spare, they check on their LinkedIn profiles and maybe even rework the Summary section (like this).
They might also dust off their actual resumes to ensure they’re current.
You never know when you’ll need it.
5. They read the news
Especially news about their specific industry. It’s so valuable to understand the latest headlines and trends in your line of work. Then you can see what’s coming and how to adapt. But mostly you can impress important people when sitting around big, fancy conference tables.
FYI: Google lets you create news categories based on keywords that matter to you. Pretty nifty.
6. They ask for feedback
Rather than assume all is well, they walk over to people they respect and say “Can you look over my work and tell me what you think?”
And when the person says, “I see room for improvement,” they say, “OK, thanks a lot” and march back to their desks to make the fixes.
7. They never sit idle
Newton is right. An object in motion tends to stay in motion.
The more productive people move, the more they accomplish. If they stop and fall into a 20-minute Candy Crush hypnosis, they leave a lot of opportunity on the table.
When the work is behind you, then steal a few minutes to numb your brain on an app.
Today it’s Candy Crush Saga. Tomorrow? Only the mobile gaming gods know the answer.