Time is a limited resource. Unlike money, we can never make more time. We have a set amount of time on this earth, in each day, and in each year.
When you’re young, you feel like you have a lot of time, and the result of this is that you tend to waste more time. As you get older, you realize how limited your time really is. You get busy and start to complain that you don’t have time for anything.
We never have enough time: not enough free time, not enough hours in the day, too few hours.
As such a limited resource, we need to get creative to re-claim some time in our days as free time. Here are a few ideas to help you with that.
There was an episode of The Office I watched, in which one of the characters was so excited that he was able to save a few minutes here and there by brushing his teeth in the shower.
It was a funny episode (as episodes of The Office always were), but it also had some merit.
While brushing your teeth in the shower may only save two minutes each day, you can use this principle to free up some of your time each day.
Amalgamate tasks by – yes – brushing your teeth in the shower, making important phone calls on your morning commute (hands-free of course), loading the dishwasher with a few dishes as you wait for the toaster to pop.
This will allow you to leave later for work, giving you time in the morning for a little more freedom.
Outsourcing can be a beautiful thing. Outsourcing tasks is not always worth it, but if you can afford to outsource some time consuming chores to a housekeeping company, you can re-claim a number of hours per week.
You can outsource a surprising amount of tasks.
As a blogger, you can outsource writing, commenting, design, carnival submissions, social media management, even blog management.
As a home owner, you can outsource yard and home maintenance, cleaning, repairs.
You can outsource taxes, financial management, even banking.
Outsourcing almost always requires some financial investment, so you need to be sure that outsourcing the task is worth it.
Re-Arrange Your Life
You can re-gain a lot of time by re-arranging your activities.
If you work 40 minutes from home, trying to find a job closer to home (or even requesting the ability to work from home a couple of days per week) can save a ton of time each week.
Perhaps you work 20 minutes from home, but your kid’s daycare is 15 minutes away from your work. If this is the case, try to find a daycare closer to your office so you can cut back on driving time.
In North America, we have a lot of habits that have a negative impact on time management. One such habit is watching television.
While it is sometimes nice to be able to relax in front of the TV after a long day, television can seriously impede on our free time.
Maybe you have poor spending habits, which require you to take a second job to pay for. This eliminates a chunk of your free time and you need to consider breaking those habits.
Even poor health habits, such as smoking, can be an intrusion on free time.
Break any habits that waste your time. You’ll never get that time back!
Time management can be tricky, but taking small steps to re-claim some of that time can impact you in a very positive way.
How have you freed up some time for yourself?
Since I work from home and my kids go to daycare, I usually get some time to myself every day. Typically I work from 7-3 and get to do whatever I want from 3-5.
That’s a solid couple of hours! Working for yourself and from home is a good way to regain some time that you’d otherwise spend commuting and getting work-ready.
The best way I save time is to periodically evaluate where I spend my time, and simplify, simplify, simplify. If what I’m doing isn’t worth the time and energy I’m expending, then it gets tossed!
I think that’s a great way to look at it, Brock.
If I have an errand to run and it’s a trip, I try to combine it with my workout. I once ran to IKEA and took the bus back.
Healthy and productive. I need to start walking places to do my errands.
I love being productive with my time and really cut down on TV. Also, we a little baby, he is the center of attention so not much time for much else. I also think combining tasks is a great way to kill 2 birds with one stone.
Cutting down on TV is always an effective way to regain some time in your day.
I ride my bicycle to work sometimes, and sometimes I just ride a bike at the gym so I can work off of my phone while exercising. I pack lunch for work as well so I can eat quickly and use a large portion of the break to be productive.
On weekends I like to run errands as early as places are open. One, I like that I am getting errands out of the way first, and two, I feel like it takes less time since there are less people on the road and less people in the stores.
I LOVE doing my errands as soon as the stores open. You save the time finding parking, waiting in line, and just the general hassle of busy stores.