Do you find yourself winding down for bed in the evening, reflecting on the day that was and contemplating all the things you wanted to achieve but never found time for? You’re certainly not alone. In in the high stress, fast-paced society we live, in it can be easy to feel overwhelmed like time is slipping away from us.
Follow Ladders on Flipboard!
Luckily, each new day brings with it a fresh 24 hours and it’s up to us to truly harness its potential. The world’s most successful people are capable of achieving an outstanding amount of work in the same 24 hours we are all afforded, so how do they manage to find the time? Follow these 9 simple time saving life hacks that will help you get the best out of each day:
9 Time Saving Tips To Get More Out Of Your Days
Tip 1: Wake up before the sun rises
I know pressing the snooze button and snuggling up in your blanket seems far more enticing than getting up while it’s still dark. But trust me, you will thank yourself later!
Early mornings are the perfect time to sneak in a workout, go for a walk or maybe even just have a little alone time to reflect on the day ahead. Treat those precious hours as ‘me time’ and enjoy them. You will be far more motivated throughout the day if you have started your day off on a positive note.
Starting your day before the sun rises and before the rest of the household is up and running can help save you time in your daily life. If you work from home, it’s the best time to sit down and tackle those annoying emails and complicated work tasks. Studies show that our brain is far more switched on and alert first thing in the morning, so pour yourself a cup of coffee and get down to business.
Tip 2: Plan to succeed
It’s time to pull out your coloured pens and stickers ad practice your funky lettering, Just kidding! Instead, invest in a 2019 plannerthat is functional and plan out the daily tasks you want to achieve.
By organising and time blocking your day, you can schedule those hard-to-finish tasks into times you know you are more alert and prepared. It also allows you to keep stock of what you had planned to complete by certain times, ensuring you keep yourself on track. Assign rankings for the tasks you wish to achieve for the day and allocate time accordingly.
Each evening, spend 10 minutes planning out the schedule for the next day. Take the time to think about what you would like to achieve the following day and how you would like your day to run and time block certain events with extra timing if needed. For example, a 30-minute trip to the dentist for an appointment at 2 pm would be time blocked from 1:30 pm till 3 pm to allow for travel time.
Spend another 10 minutes each morning updating your daily schedule and checking what you have planned for the day. That way, you can be truly organised and prepared for wherever the day takes you.
Tip 3: Organise your morning routine before bed
Ever have one of those mornings where you faff around for 20 minutes looking for a certain work shirt, only to discover it’s in the wash? Eliminate that time wastage by planning out your morning routine before you go to bed at night.
Choose your outfit for the next day and lay it out ready the night before with shoes, socks and underwear all included. If possible, have a shower before you go to bed so you don’t waste time standing around as the clock is ticking. If you are one of those people that has to shower each morning, put an alarm on your phone for 5 minutes, get in, wash and get out before the timer goes off.
Invest in a great hair dryer that dries your hair quickly or towel dry and style, wet hair looks are all the rage at the moment and will save time. Spend time on the weekend practising your current makeup look and try to bring the time it takes down, a quick five-minute look with some foundation, a bronzer as eyeshadow and contour plus a bright lip looks fantastic and gets you out the door faster.
If possible, try and eat your breakfast on your commute. A smoothie, overnight oats or some fresh fruit and yoghurt are all great breakfast ideas that can be prepared the night before and eaten on the move.
Tip 4: Keep your phone out of reach
So often we grab our phone just to ‘quickly’ check social media and then — whoa! where did that half an hour disappear to? Keep your phone in your handbag and avoid checking it throughout the day.
Breaking the screen addiction can be hard, so don’t expect just to just go cold turkey on social media. Give yourself a goal that you are only going to check your phone a certain amount of times each day and slowly reduce that amount down until you are satisfied with your usage levels. Schedule in a 10-minute Facebook session during your lunch break but avoid the temptation to avoid checking your phone all the time.
If you have an iPhone or Google Pixel, you can actually check your daily screen time which is extremely eye-opening! Track your usage for a week and you will honestly be shocked at the amount of time wasted looking at your phone.
Tip 5: Plan ahead your meals for the week
Whether you meal prep on the weekend or just plan and shop for your weekly meals during the weekend and cook them every night, having an idea of what you are eating for dinner each night can drastically reduce time wasted arguing about what to eat.
Planning your weekly meals and shopping before cooking can also help you save money and eat healthier, too. Spend time each Sunday creating a plan for the week. If you struggle with inspiration, create a theme for each night — for example, Meatless Mondays, Taco Tuesdays and so on, or check out Pinterest for an abundance of recipes for every diet type, cooking time frame and flavour combination imaginable.
It’s also a great idea to plan for extra portions and take those for lunch each day. That way, you don’t have to stuff around wondering what you could possibly have for lunch or sit down to a sad sandwich whilst you watch your co-worker eat the beautiful pasta they had for dinner the night before drooling with envy.
Tip 6: Avoid the TV trap
Do you get home from work, sit down on the couch for a few minutes and then end up wasting the rest of your evening watching a Netflix marathon or catching up on the latest Kardashian drama?
Avoid this time-wasting trap by simply finding something better to do with your time. Put on a podcast, audiobook or some music and spend those after work hours getting some housework done. Blast some upbeat 90’s tunes and dance around the house whilst you dust, clean and sweep. It’s amazing what a difference music can make to your mood and the work you can get done when you are singing along to your jam!
Tip 7: Get one cleaning task done before bed
Before you finish up for the evening, select one cleaning task that needs to be done and complete it before you head off to bed. It could be something as simple as putting on a quick load of laundry, unpacking the dishwasher, wiping over all the kitchen surfaces or anything else you know should be dealt with.
Completing one task per evening means there is always something being completed and you reduce the overall amount of cleaning that you have to do at a later date. A clean house leads to a clean, and restful mind and a happier deeper sleep.
Tip 8: Give yourself some ‘Me Time’
Schedule a block of time each evening just for you and use this time to relax and recount the day that was. Spend time doing self-care practices like reading, writing, knitting, practising yoga, meditating or something that you find completely relaxing. To really get the best out of each day, you first need to ensure that you are getting the best out of yourself!
Tip 9: Go to bed early
If possible, try and be in bed by 10:30 at the latest — PJs on, teeth brushed, face cleaned, lights off. No lying in bed watching tv or sitting on your phone! Getting into a routine of going to bed at a reasonable time makes it far easier to get up earlier in the morning. Our brains are far less active in the evening and most often time is just wasted watching TV. So, going to bed earlier and using those early hours when you are more alert is going to help you be more productive.
Creating a bedtime routine also greatly helps you wind down for bed. For example, taking a few minutes to wash your face and apply your moisturiser in the same way each evening can eventually place you in an almost meditative state completely relaxing you and removing any stress from your mind which may prevent sleep.
Time management can be a constant struggle, but using the time saving techniques above can help you manage it. However, it’s also important to remember that at the end of the day, life is more important than the emails sitting in your inbox or the load of washing that needs to be folded. Sometimes, it’s worth saying “to hell with it all” and spending a day down at the beach enjoying yourself!
You can check out Georgia’s blog The Hunt Life here or follow her on Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter.