When was the last time you managed any of these without thinking about 15 other stressful things at once: Time to spend with your kids at the end of the day, a few hours with your partner, a few minutes to relax with your favorite book or having a “normal” amount of sleep to recharge your batteries?
Because we suspect the answer we are looking for ways to save the most precious commodity in modern life, no – not money, but time. We have collected 15 tips to help you create a little extra free time per day not to use for more work but strictly for leisure!
Go to the supermarket once per week
Avoid going to the supermarket on a daily basis to buy only what you need for the day. Create a shopping list for the whole week and go to the supermarket only once. This way you save time and money because the more times you visit the “temple” of consumerism, the more likely you are to get carried away in unnecessary purchases.
Create a weekly cooking plan.
Spend some time during the weekend in your kitchen and prepare a large quantity of food, which you can place in the freezer. So what you have to do daily is heat the food for the day without losing valuable time cooking. Alternatively, if you prefer to cook daily, get ready in advance: decide what to cook each day and what ingredients are needed.
Decide what you will wear in the morning the night before.
This is valuable advice especially for women who do not hesitate to skip breakfast for the sake of finding what to wear and what accessories to use.
Place everyday objects in “strategic” locations.
For example, put your umbrella, coat, your purse or bag near the front door so you can find them easily on your way out. Keep your house tidy in order to avoid looking for your keys under piles of magazines and newspapers, when you could already be in the car.
Pay your bills electronically.
Take advantage of the virtues of technology and e-banking, saving many hours of waiting in public services, phone companies or banks.
Utilize your time while on public transport.
If you use public transportation, read / study / analyze and prepare part of your job, so when you get to work you have already saved half an hour.
Follow the 2 minute rule
This is a very simple rule that states: Complete any task immediately that doesn’t take more than 2 minutes. So you will not end up at the end of the day with dozens of mentally reminders for small things, which are very likely to forget as the hours pass.
Group tasks together
Set a specific time each day to answer all your emails, so that you don’t return to the inbox every half hour to check if you have missed something. Make necessary calls one after the other or “group” all obligations of economic nature together so as not to get distracted from other activities and lose your concentration.
Teach your children how to get organized
Teach your little roommates to pave their beds, not to leave their toys on the floor and teach them how to prepare themselves for school. Make it in a fun way that does not seem like the ultimate chore and save valuable time for tidying up children’s room.
Avoid discussions that do not interest you.
You might want to look nice but unnecessary conversations can deprive you many man hours each month. If you do not feel or have the time and patience to participate in a discussion just learn to say “no” and explain to them in a polite but assertive way that you have a lot of work and you can talk another time.
Make practical use of your computer
You cannot imagine how many minutes you lose every day because of non-practical use of your computer. As a rule of thumb only open programs that are necessary each time. Do not open emails, Facebook, Twitter, Photoshop, weather forecasting, five videos on YouTube and eight music players simultaneously.
Apart from the lack of concentration that each of the above “temptations” creates, the system will be overloaded and each click will be accompanied by a whole minute of delay. When your computer is getting very slow, consult a technician, uninstall unused programs or consider a format.
Try faster but more effective ways to work out so you do not need to spend a whole hour on the treadmill or in the gym. Take advantage of the benefits of High Intensity Interval Training, which can in 15 minutes of daily exercise keep you fit and wake up your metabolism.
Utilize mobile applications.
Smartphones are named so for a reason. Their ability to utilize applications in every possible aspect of our lives can be an important factor in saving time. For example, use navigation apps to save the hassle from unknown streets. Use apps to easily find night pharmacies or cheap gas stations without having to wander around. There are thousands of apps for everything you can image so use them for your benefit.
Apply the rule of the “3D”.
«Do it», «Dump it», or «Delegate it». In other words, for every task we have three options: to do it, to skip it, or to assign it to someone else. Weigh your needs and your abilities and choose wisely for each task you have to do.
Remember to relax, find a few minutes to refresh your mental concentration and return with greater vengeance. You will find that small breaks are not wasting valuable time, but part of a tactic that will eventually bring you many hours of free time.