Time-poor busy people around the UK risk rushing important long-term decisions, with 9 out of 10 (90%) regretting rushing their career choice and 87% feeling regret over hurrying financial decisions, new research from Scottish Widows has revealed.
The study into managing time and life administration priorities found that people in the UK are becoming busier: 70% feel more pushed for time than they did three years ago, with a quarter (25%) rarely or never having spare time and 26% feeling guilty if they ever do find themselves with time on their hands.
The poll of 2,010 people aged 21-65 showed seven out of 10 adults (69%) feel day-to-day tasks have become increasingly time-consuming over the past three years and highlighted how people are managing potentially life-altering tasks as a result. More than a third (36%) admitted life administration – including financial planning, researching money-saving opportunities and banking – is their biggest time-stealer.
Meanwhile, family responsibilities are also increasingly consuming schedules, with 77% of respondents spending more time on childcare duties and caring for the wider family (81%) now than three years ago. According to the study, half of those surveyed have a personal to-do list, increasing to 70% among 26 to 35 year-olds. The research found that the most popular time to tackle to-do lists is on a Saturday morning in the living room. These ‘Saturday Morning Pyjama Planners’ are more time-aware than most as only 15% of the overall respondents are setting time aside to complete their lists. (17%) of respondents with a to-do list typically spend the most amount of time on Saturday completing it, normally in the morning (37% of those who complete their to-do list on Saturday) and in their living room (47% of those who complete their to-do list on Saturday).
The poll revealed tasks linger on our to-do lists for an average of nine weeks, with almost half (44%) admitting there are tasks every day that they never get to. A fifth of us blame social media as a distraction getting in the way of to-do lists and a further 20% claim lack of motivation prevents them from completing life admin. Family is the biggest diversion for 15% of those asked, while personal emails (18%) and online shopping (11%) are among the most common to-do list gatecrashers. Housework topped the poll for taking up the most time outside of work according to 63% of those surveyed, while home improvement (40%), cleaning (35%) and paperwork (33%) were the most commonly put off household tasks.
Sources: www.scottishwidows.co.uk; (Press release: 2015/03/16)