Sunday, 20 November 2011

Saving time

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Most people I know want more time. The trouble is that there's really only so much of it. Once you take out what you've already dedicated, there's less. Then there's last minute surprises and there's a bit less. Then there's the stuff that's got to get done, but is a bit flexible. This is where I try to save time so I can have more for the things I enjoy.  Here some tips I really like.

Photo by alancleaver_2000
Do things when fewer people are doing them. Go to lunch late or early, go to the post office at non-peak hours. If I can drag myself to the grocery store on a weekday morning, there'll be fewer people in the lines. That equals less time spent there and by doing it then, I don't have to interrupt my weekend.

Give yourself a only a few choices. I can be a bit indecisive and spend way too much time deciding what brand to buy, make for dinner, or which task to do first first. All this deciding takes up valuable time; by limiting my options, I reclaim a fair amount. (I'm pretty indecisive, I'll be tackling this issue in a future post)

Set a time limit. You might have 2 hours before you have to leave for work, but that doesn't mean you should spend it all figuring out what to wear or cleaning the apartment. Set a time limit and stick to it. You'll be more efficient and have time left over for other things. 

I'm generally not a fan of multi-tasking, but sometimes it makes sense. If I have to wait for the pasta to boil, it might make sense to do my bills. I might go to the store or to the gym while I wait for my clothes at the laundymat. 

Photo by Wiertz S├ębastien
Don't discount the small stuff. I try to find pockets of time and use them wisely.It might be for things I have to do or things I enjoy. A list of 15-minute rewards can be a useful thing. Next time you've got a little bit of time on your hands, you might read, or dance, sing; do whatever you'd love to in those seconds.


We can't make more time, but we can definitely learn how to use it. Do you have any time-saving tips? Share a comment and let us know about them.

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Update: Last week I decided my 30 day challenge was going to involve 5 minutes of breathing meditation everyday. So far, about half of the days have lacked it. No sweat.  My new strategy- even though it's only 5 minutes, make it a priority and set aside a time each day to do it. I'm adding it as part of my prep before something that really requires my focus or energy/ after my workout/ before I head out in the morning, depending on the day. Good luck with your 30-day challenge and time-saving.

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