Productive things you can do when you are ‘on the bench’

Nowadays, most of us are working in big MNCs and are acquainted with the not-so-friendly IT terminologies. So, I will not be mistaken if I talk about being ‘on the bench’. For readers who are not used to this term, here is a link that will explain to you what does being ‘on the bench’ mean.

Okay. Now that my previous project has been completed, I am put on the bench, waiting for my next project allocation. After completing all my official commitments relating to the previous project, here I am, writing to you, and sharing my ideas about appropriate time utilization methods that will make you productive, even at idle hours.

Let’s get started !

Update yourself

Many companies have an in-house knowledge base filled with informative content. They can come in the form of books available in a library or in the form of online tutorials available over the intranet. If you are an employee in any company having these facilities, being on the bench is the perfect time to utilize them and update yourself. You can learn about new technologies, use of new software, learn new concept etc. Keeping yourself updated always comes in handy and it will also push you up in the list of preferred candidates.

Read anything

If you had ‘too much’ in your previous project and want a relaxing break, read. Reading anything, any book, any article from your preferred genre will help you escape boredom. It will keep you informed about the latest trend. If you like to write, you might learn a new style of writing. Nowadays, companies provide internet connection to access sites(without harming any confidential details); utilize that. You will enter the ocean of content. Your vocabulary and communication skills will definitely improve and who knows, you might just as well develop a new hobby!

Write a letter

By writing I do not mean ‘typing’ using your keyboard. Common, you are on the bench! Snap out of the computer and the internet and stop using your keyboard, like seriously, give some rest to your poor fingers. Grab a pen and paper – the former weapons of communication, think about someone and start writing a letter. You will literally know how much damage the auto-correction has done to your spell-check and how bad your handwriting has turned to.However, sending the letter (not posting an email) is at your discretion, although the person at the receiving end will be overjoyed and may have watery eyes while reading your message.  Well, these small things are worth your attention, aren’t they?

Create anything

If you want to rekindle the creative you, well, go ahead. You have ample time when you are on the bench to remember how creative your mind used to be. Bring it back and put into action. A lot of art and craft things are available in the market at cheaper rates and more of such things are available around you, for free. Get your hands on some of those and get going. Do some quilling, some painting, make some origami, do any DYI art forms, recycle old bottles, decorate your desk, draw colorful doodles, etc. You can do anything creative. All you need to do is look around you and find an idea.

Give some time to yourself

This is especially for the people who get busy with family and household chores after office. Being on the bench will allow you some time to pay attention to yourself. Though you can’t leave office premises for the time calculation, you can examine and scrutinize the changes in your lifestyle, your food habits, your workout regime etc. You can analyse your stress levels, your skin conditions etc. and chalk out a plan to undo the wrong practices you have been following, unknowingly.

Plan a vacation

Everybody needs a break from the daily routine and it needs some extensive planning. What better time than this when you have access to the internet, no work and ample time. Explore the internet for some travel sites and travel packages, plan the budget and make up your mind not to cancel this trip, like you did the last time.

Make your to-do list

Being on the bench will give you enough time to make your personalized to-do list. You can decide some recipes to cook, invite your folks for dinner, call up your old relatives, decide necessary items for your shopping cart, fix all the flickering bulbs at home, mend the tap etc. Put every small thing that you have been delaying for so long on the to-do list and stick it on your refrigerator as soon as you reach home.

So you see, utilizing time can be done in innumerable ways. Take a break from the time-consuming and tiring social media sites and get productive. Next time when you are put on bench, remember to do any of these or you can add new ideas to your own list.

Oh ya, don’t forget to share your innovative ideas with others ! 🙂


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How I started writing

I have read many posts, blogs, poems, letters and every single word that was once somebody’s brainchild and now has shaped into a beautiful piece of written art and published online. I would learn new phrases, new words, new idioms and knowing that I always had a knack for writing, I would decide to use them, at least once, into my writings. But then, the questions – ‘What to write?’ and ‘How to write?’ remained unanswered like an unsolved mystery.

There was always a conflict between my heart and brain about writing. Like every other pessimistic heart, even mine, with two evil horns, would constantly demotivate me from writing and adding to the demotivation was the internet, flooding with innumerable posts and blogs and everything else written by experts. I would search for any topic and land on an article on the same. ‘Who would read my clumsy writing?’, I would often huff to myself. I finally fell for the rants of my evil heart and concluded – I will not write because I cannot write. On the other hand, there was my poor little brain, with the halo of an angel, try to bring back my optimism about writing. It would constantly brainwash me and make me pick up the pen and paper, but to no avail. The paper remained spotless and I did not write. It so appeared that the dark side was much stronger. Time flew by and I was shammed by my incapability to write, until one day, when I wrote an article, upon a request, to my utter disbelief. My brain smirked in triumph as if it knew what was about to begin.

Initially, when I started writing, I wished the things to come to me instantly. (Sometimes, secretly, I still do.) Like a silly amateur, I would dream of having my page filled with writings and other renditions. I had notebooks with words written and scratched, words matched with other words trying to rhyme, incomplete sentences and when nothing worked, my doodles. I would write two sentences and read them, maybe a thousand times, to find the next stretch of words that would appropriately continue the content under progress. I would stare at the blank page for hours in desperation, sipping on coffee and searching for words from nowhere. Though I was disappointed, yet I kept my boat sailing. This time, nothing could thwart me from achieving my big dream. Yes, I dream big, I always do. I think that is what I like to define myself with. I knew the journey had begun and was no turning back. I, somehow, managed to start writing. I wrote, small and big, about many topics, but disclosed none.

It is not an easy task. One basic thing that I have learnt is writing and research go hand in hand. Exclusive writing needs exclusive research. Knowing the audience, feeling the right time, getting the correct topic and content, forming them together – it took me time to know all these and I am still learning. Nevertheless, I am not afraid to write anymore. I have taken my baby steps and I know the steps will mature one day, sooner or later. Now, I freely write about everything that is there on my mind.

Well, all thanks to technology and digital media, I no longer have to scribble in my notebooks anymore. Whenever I have the urge to write, I open my laptop and sit.  However, I sit with the same blank stare, still searching for words from an imaginary cloud.

Not everything can change at once, right? 🙂



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