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8 Things to Do While You’re On Hold

Being on hold bites—big-time. But if you ever want to watch Jersey Shore again (with sound, that is), you’re going to have to suck it up and call the cable company. So take advantage of that waiting time and multitask.

Photo: Getty Images / The Nest

1. Update your playlists
Craving some new music but never seem to find the time to download the latest stuff? Um, hello! How about right now? Create a playlist for the gym, one for your commute and another for “chill out” nights (unless you really like listening to your girlfriend’s favorite Bon Jovi album over and over again).

2. Plan your weekend
Give yourself something to look forward to (if you ever get off the damn phone, that is) by using this time to plan a weekend’s worth of activities. Go to OpenTable.com (or the restaurant’s website) to make a rez for Saturday night, or nab movie tix at Fandango.com. Already committed to your friend’s housewarming party? Order a host gift now (or you know you’ll end up regifting that weird tchotchke you got when you moved last year).

3. Get busy
You have at least five minutes, and your partner’s sitting there on the couch watching the tube.... Do the math. Just try to keep the noise down (or put your phone on mute) so if Carol, your friendly representative, comes back before you’re done, she doesn’t freak out and hang up.

4. Burn some calories
Put on your workout gear before you dial so you can squeeze in a little cardio while you’re on hold. Between jumping jacks, push-ups, crunches, and lunges, you’ll burn off at least a few of those chips in the time it takes to locate your account.

5. Pay your bills
Being forced to listen to Musak sucks. Paying bills sucks. So why not kill two burdens with one stone? If you’re paperless, log on and you can knock out your credit card, cable, insurance and electric bills in one fell swoop. (Just add stamps and a checkbook to the equation if you’re old-school like that.)

6. Tidy up
On a cell or portable? (If not, it’s time to join the twenty-first century.) Mosey on over to the bathroom for a quick grooming session. Whip out the toenail clippers, pumice stone, nose hair trimmers, teeth whitening gizmo of choice... You know what needs attention. Pay attention to it.

7. Organize your desktop
You can’t even see that background image of you hiking Machu Picchu because it’s buried under a mess of icons—it’s time for a little laptop maintenance. Create folders (work, bills, travel plans, etc.) and drop in your docs. Still hearing Kenny G on the other end? Start on those photos.

8. Clean out your wallet
If your wallet (or purse) is bursting at the seams with receipts, loose change, old insurance cards, your college student ID and a few pesos from your trip to Mexico last year, now’s the perfect opportunity to clean it out. Pack rat.

-- Kristin Koch

See More: Cleaning & Organizing