So it’s internship season, and while some are bust bustling around and earning valuable work experience, others are, well… stapling. Either way, killing time at the office doesn’t have to be unproductive. Whether on your break or in between meetings or assignments, you can still take back your own time.

Plan your budget

Getting your monthly budgeting done at work is one of the most productive choices you can make. You were already being productive at work, so it will be much easier to get into the mental zone to tackle your budget since you’re always working and have calculators and spread sheets around. Plus, if you’re really trying to kill time it will look like you’re working so you are less likely to get caught taking you-time!

Plan your weekend

Get a jump start on the weekend, and motivation to get through the rest of the work week, by looking forward to the weekend and planning something fun for yourself. Look up movies, great deals, new restaurants, whatever catches your fancy.

Starting your weekend early mentally is a great way to look forward to everything to come and remain optimistic. Not to mention, time will fly! So by the time your last hour on the clock come around on Friday you’ll be ready to relax.

Pay your bills online

What is more heart breaking, feeling stuck working all day at your internship or paying your bills? The answer is both, so why not get all of the heartbreak out of the way in one swoop? Then by the time you get home you’ll feel freer to do what you actually want to do – sleep, read, whatever!

Paying bills can be done online, and is a great way to stay organized and on top of everything. Not to mention, you don’t have to have paperwork with you to get things done.

Plan your next adventure

Ok, so two out of the four of these didn’t sound so fun, so why not skip those and plan your next adventure? Be your own concierge and plan a little get away for a day trip or even a weekend if you can take the time. Even if you don’t actually commit to a trip, looking at exotic places and picturing yourself being there is like a mini vacation from the day.

Surfing the web and exploring new books, recipes, and DIY projects is another way to plan an adventure or fun project to do after hours.

What do you think?

What do you do on your work breaks? Do you have any tricks to stay productive while killing time? Share with us in the comments section below.


  1. avatar nicole says:

    These are great suggestions, but I agree with Minami, people shouldn’t do personal things at work.

    Last summer I worked at a defense contractor (as an electrical engineer), and EVERYONE was doing personal stuff at work. It made me hate my job because I don’t want to be at work if I’m not being productive. In my experience, if you are killing time at work, then it isn’t the right job / industry for you. After my experience with the defense contractor, I decided to get my PhD because I enjoyed my semester job as a TA. When teaching college students, I’m never just killing time and I love my job.

  2. avatar Minami says:

    I don’t think it’s wise to tell people getting into the workforce for the first time to do personal things on internship time! If there’s not enough to do and you’re “trying to kill time”, something is wrong.

    If you feel bored why not ask your superiors if they have any extra work for you or something you can help with? If there really isn’t anything to do, ask a team member or your boss if you can shadow them for a while. This is a great learning opportunity because you get to see what they do and learn what makes them great at their job.

    You could also make up your own projects that you think would benefit the company (just run them by your boss first). They will love the initiative and that will definitely bring a great recommendation after the internship is over – or a full-time position!

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