Wasteful and unnecessary phrases and utterances in conversation.
This is mostly because wasting time annoys me. Don’t get me wrong, I love wasting time, but it has to be the right kind of time wasting. For example, lying in bed on the weekend until a shameful hour is great, good for the body, good for the mind. Even if you/I do it for months on end.
I don’t even have a problem with Facebook distracting or YouTube. At least Youtube is informative and Facebook is social. But there are things that we do that have no excuse to be taking my life away. And a lot of this time is lost in utterances that are just not needed.
For example, earlier today I was messaging this guy I’m renting a motorbike from. He has taken my bike away for maintenance and he is now ready for me to pick it up, asking me when I plan on coming. I said ‘Oh, cool I was waiting for you. I’m going into District 1 on Thursday anyway so that would be a great time.’
Why did I type the underlined? there is no justifiable cause, no social benefit, nothing. It’s 100% wasteful. Not only that, but I did it via text on a smart phone. Text on a smart phone is an annoyance worth an article in its own and has basically ruined most telephonic communication for me. There are entire websites – numerous websites – based solely on people’s mistakes on smart phone texting, it’s just that useless and unintuitive. (Why is wordpress telling me ‘texting’ and ‘unintuitive’ aren’t words? there’s another post of annoyances)
Anyway, you waste time via texting mistakes, but at least this is a process of learning. Something you build upon and improve and it probably has various cognitive benefits as you go. But let’s see.
Let’s say I write a mere 5 wasted words in a single stupid phrase, once a day. And let’s say that 5 words, removing time for mistakes, takes about 3 seconds to type. 3 seconds a day – and this is a very conservative estimate – lost. 3 x 1 year = 1095 seconds, or 18 minutes. I’ve lost a little over 18 minutes of my year typing pointless shit. I’m already desperate to get back the life I miss whilst in the midst of blinking.
And this is JUST texting. What about the crap I utter vocally? I admit I’m worse than the average for this because I’m socially inept, but even so, countless people I encounter can babble on for entire minutes without saying a single word that involves any form of information other than the individual words themselves. I can learn or respond or develop none of it.
‘Yeah I came down later than I thought I would because I was doing some stuff in the office which took a little bit of time, but it was pretty annoying because the printer wasn’t working, but it turned out it was working and I was just pressing the wrong button, but nobody actually told me I had to change the name of the printer you know?‘ Ok I learnt that you just wasted 10 seconds of my life saying that to me I suppose, I’ll give you that.
So let’s say I lose a minimum of 1 minute a day listening to mindless nonsense, and I myself waste a good 30 seconds a day doing it myself. 1:30 x 1 year = 547 minutes, or over 9 hours a year.
between the age of 18 – 60, the most active area, I lose a grand total of 390+ hours, or, rounded up to 400, 16.67 days. I think you can understand how this isn’t a joke now, right? I’ve lost 16.67 days. It’s not like I lost it to restoring energy in sleep, or learning a new skill like texting, or enjoying myself in gaming, or exercising by climbing annoying stairs. I’ve lost 16.67 days to nothing.
We sleep for 1/3 of our life. We work for 1/3 of our life. I only have 1/3 of my life to live. I can’t afford to be messing around saying ‘Oh yeah I haven’t eaten it. I was going to but I wasn’t hungry enough.’
To think this is just one aspect of thousands that we waste. Now you just have to think in perspective. How much time is wasted in your life doing various other things; staring at the wall in the shower, waiting for a website to load instead of doing something else while you wait, cooking, peeing, chewing, making decisions, sneezing, traffic lights. All admittedly serve infinitely more purpose than the aforementioned complaint, but you find that you only actually get to enjoy life for about 1/20th of the time you’re actually alive.
I’ll save that maths for yourself. Different people will have different answers. Don’t forget to show your working.