Is Wasting Time An Epidemic?
This is an adaptation on the question asked in Quora – What is truly a waste of your personal time?
This list applies to real life, but can equally be adapted for Second Life and other virtual worlds.
I had a think about this list and realised that you can waste as much, if not more time, in virtual worlds like Second Life.
Be honest with yourself, ask yourself how many of these do you do and add up how much time you spend simply wasting time doing them each day.
1. Watching Television
Yes, you can watch TV in Second Life too. There’s a TV system that’s exclusive to Second Life TV and film delivery.
I know you can have TV in your virtual home and can just log in to watch TV and relax, but look into your living room – there’s a TV there too… Why do it in Second Life?
2. Surfing on the internet without a clear objective (just to pass time)
OK so we’ve all got time on our hands, but browsing from one link to another? Seriously – why?
Yes, I do it too and it wastes a lot of my time as well. In Second Life, they call it Island Hopping… it’s the ‘ohh it’s new! – ohh it’s new! – ohh it’s new! Factor. Something else new and shiny needed every second to appeal to us. Perfect Eye Candy to browse through – why? You don’t know, you just do it because it’s there. You don’t need it, it’s of no use to you. Stop it!
3. Engaging in small talk
Yes you know the whole routine, ‘How are you?’ (The only answer allow is ‘OK’, fine or great). Next question… Usually a tough one once we’ve done with the first one – ‘what are you doing today?’ Why ask this – you don’t care – so why ask? It’s polite but totally pointless. Next question is usually ‘where are you?’ I’m dying to answer this line with ‘I’m in the bath!’, but all sorts of places come up here.
Why don’t we just say ‘I’m into Stamp Collecting and Chess – what hobby do you have and what’s your favourite game?’ There, ice broken, no bones broken but a whole lot of time saved on that one. – Well Done!
4. Getting stuck in Traffic Jams
OK, so Traffic Jams is one thing we don’t get in virtual worlds. In fact a lack of people to talk with is more of a problem to us. With such a few people to go around, a large number of locations are all hoping to be the best and attract people. So finding a crowd that’s not full of bots is a tall order.
The most real people can be found in Community Hubs like we have in London. A lot of popular places are full of spammer bots and griefers. Both of which are pretty uncomfortable to be around.
5. Getting dragged into grapevine talks
Grapevine talking (or Gossip) is one of the least productive things to do in Second Life and virtual worlds. If it’s being held in local chat, then why bother. It’s a fact that 60% of our time is spent gossiping (mostly about other people).
Gossip can be very dangerous for the gossipers too in virtual worlds.
Here are 5 deadly reasons why NOT to gossip:
- 1) If it’s on local chat it’ll get back to the person you’re talking about
- 2) If it’s in Private Message (IM), you stand a chance that the person(s) you’re talking with is there to cause trouble and will tell the person you’re talking about.. This means it’ll get back to the person you’re talking about.
- 3) If you tell that person you’re talking about, they’ll wonder what part you had to play in the discussion (I’m sure you’ll be smart enough to edit out the bad things you said).
- 4) If it’s in voice chat, there’s a high likelihood it’ll end up on YouTube under a griefer’s channel (and it’ll get back to the person you’re talking about.) Won’t that be fun!
- 5) It’s unpleasant to be called a Gossip – eventually no one will want to talk with you because what you said has now got back to all the people you talk about.
So, just say nice stuff and be positive. It’ll earn you friends too.
6. Criticising people
So, we all hate a critic! – Don’t we?
You walk into a new area and are dressed like a new user, furry spider etc – we’ve all done it. Then the local bully picks on you!
What do you do? Stay and stick up for yourself? Change your AV / Hair / whatever was being criticised? Or leave?
When you’re the critic all you do is make people dislike you. You may think you’re sticking up for someone or you’re being the wittiest avatar around, but an argument usually starts with a critic and ends with everyone walking away from them. So, just stop it, it’s a huge waste of time and it’s unpleasant for everyone.
7. Arguing with the boss for a good appraisal
I guess this means being banned to us in London. If you’ve behaved badly (possibly one of the above), then take your medicine. In London the team is very good about banning and we only ban for a few days because people who want to come back will do.
Rules are rules – arguing against them wastes your time and ours. We’re good hearted individuals so if you’ve done wrong, you deserved it. Arguing and trying to persuade us to do something else is useless time wasting.
8. Over analysing my past
The past is done, ‘could have’, ‘should have’ etc. are all done with and talking about them or moaning about them is wasted time. People will listen to a point, then they switch off and teleport out as soon as they see you arrive. Be smart, don’t moan about your lot. At least in Second life, if you screw up totally, you can go and get yourself a brand new avatar!
In real life that’s currently impossible so leave moaning about past mistakes where it belongs – in Real Life!
Be smart, remember that we’re all in Second Life to take a break from real life for a while.
9. Worrying too much about the future
The future’s uncertain. That’s all we can say about it. All those plans of things you’re going to do, promises you make (and will break) are all just hot air now.
When the time gets there, if you’ve done enough organising and planning, it’ll all come together. If not, it’ll be another bout of ‘should have’ ‘could have’s’. Give us a break!
10. Not saying “No” to things and then getting dragged to attend events and parties that are no fun
This may be the last one, but it’s the most important. Why say “Yes” when you mean “No”? Everyone is disappointed then. You’re doing something you don’t want to do and if you’re with someone else, you’re probably also making them miserable too!
Grow tough and say “No”. People will respect you for it.