When you have some extra time on your hands — not enough to really go anywhere or paint a room, but just several minutes or at most half an hour — you may wish you could be productive rather than just kill time. Here are a few things you can do when you have a few extra minutes that you don’t want to waste.

1. Read a little. Be it a book, the paper, a blog, or a magazine. Ten minutes of reading a day makes a difference in how you process information.

2. Floss and brush your teeth. Twice a day is good, and thrice is better. It only takes five minutes, and you will feel refreshed afterward. It’s a great little pick-me-up, and, yes, it makes you healthier. There is a connection between our oral health and our heart health.

3. If you want to freshen up but don’t have time for a shower, try washing your face. It will give you a lift and can help reduce your anxiety.

4. Load (or unload, as the case may be) the dishwasher. You’ll doing something constructive that you would need to do later, anyway. Cleaning off counters, taking out the trash and generally picking up around the house usually takes only a few minutes. Generally, if your home is more organized, so is your mind.

5. Clean out a junk drawer. You’ll likely discover that most of it is, indeed, junk.

6. Review your social media accounts. A few minutes is all it takes. Just don’t allow yourself to get sucked into surfing through the accounts to see what’s up with your internet friends.

7. Throw out old paperwork. If you have files, envelopes or opened letters on your desk, it’s probably because you don’t have time to attack the whole desk-cleaning process, or you’re intimidated by it. Start by just doing it in short chunks.

8. Reach out to an old friend. Send a text or an e-mail to someone with whom you have not communicated in a while (other than liking their posts on Facebook). Getting in touch will make both of you feel better.

9. If something with a tail is around, spend a few extra minutes giving it some extra attention. Petting a dog or cat helps us to relax, lowers our blood pressure and makes us feel more secure.