Do you ever reach the end of a day to look back and realise that you didn’t actually do anything at all? You ate some food, you went to your job to make money and pay the bills, and you watched some TV in the evening. It sounds like a standard day, but unless what you do at work actively brings you closer to where you want to be, you didn’t achieve anything. It’s not your fault; you didn’t really have any free time to spend doing quality things, but what if you had an extra hour or two every day? And what if you spent that extra hour or two being productive and trying to bring yourself closer to fulfilling your goals? I’ve made this list of 6 things you can do every day to make your daily routine more time efficient, so you can free up more time where you can be active, but first, let’s take a look at some stats:
Over 2 hours are spent by the average person in the developed world scrolling aimlessly through social media DAILY. That’s almost 800 hours per year, or more than a month. Imagine how much you could get done in over a month of time instead of scrolling down your Facebook feed.
The average person spends nearly 13,000 hours cleaning in a lifetime, over 60,000 hours cooking and cleaning up, and 5 years of their life waiting in lines and queues.
So, yeah, you probably feel pretty disgusted, right? It’s not too late to change how you spend your limited time though, so follow this advice, and you might get several years of your life back, where you can do productive tasks or just have fun.
Find a way to make your commute worthwhile.
Many people have long commutes to and from work, this is most commonly a walk, a drive, or a train journey. The time you spend travelling to and from work really adds up, so finding ways to make the journey productive is crucial. There are a few options here. Firstly, you could trade your walk for a run, or your drive for a cycle. This designated your commute as exercise time, which you’ll get back elsewhere in the week, because you won’t need to exercise in the evenings. There’s only so much you can safely do if you’re driving a car, but if you’re walking or especially if you’re on a train, you can plan for your day or your week, or crack on with some writing or studying or other work. For many people, this could add up to about an extra 500 hours per year of productive tasks during their commute.
Be systematic and efficient when doing daily tasks.
As I mentioned before, day to day tasks such as cooking and cleaning take up more than 70,000 hours of the average person’s life. If you could cut that down by just a fraction by being more efficient, you could get back a substantial portion of your life. There are lots of ways to do this, here are some ideas: invest in a Nutribullet to effectively make nutritious shakes as meals in less than a minute, or a Vitamix to make hot soups in just 5! Make yourself a meal plan so you can get all your shopping in one go. You can also divide your laundry into like colours as you go, you can iron everything together while they are still damp immediately out the wash, and you can use only plain dishes so that you don’t have to hand wash anything if you have a dishwasher.
Relax properly – have designated downtime
If you designate downtime where you can kick back and not worry about a thing at the start of every week, then you will be more likely to make that downtime really count (by having prepared candle-lit bubble baths or whatever suits you), and you will be less likely to seek out downtime and feel lazy at other points in the week when you should be working, because you’ll be anticipating your scheduled relaxitime!
Delete your social media apps.
It’s so easy to just sit still and scroll down your Instagram feed, mindlessly liking all the cute puppies and stupid hair-cuts, and it’s so tempting. This is why its imperative to delete the app off your phone altogether. If the app stays there, you know you’ll use it. The same goes for Facebook – even though it’s so entertaining to learn about unsolved crimes from Unilad, it won’t bring you any closer to your dreams, and will likely just eat up your whole evening – and Twitter (though I must admit I kept that one on my phone just for the entertainment from Trump’s posts). There are many other social media apps you probably have on your phone – delete them as well. You’ll realise after you’ve done it that you feel liberated. If you need them they’ll still be there on the internet, and you can check up through your computer, but just get rid of those blaring logos on your wallpaper, tempting you all day like a big red button.
Clear out your wardrobe – consider a capsule.
This one will save you a lot of time every morning if you find it difficult to pick out clothes. It will also increase the efficiency of your clothes washing as well as the neatness of your wardrobe. For those of you who don’t know, a capsule wardrobe is one with a very limited selection of essential items of clothing, all of which are on the same colour palette, and therefore can be worn in any combination. The idea is to change the wardrobe 2-4 times a year to suit the season. I’ve never personally tried this one, although I have been tempted (too many clothes I love too much to choose between), but I’ve heard people describe it as something which can alleviate a great deal of stress, as well as the obvious time saving benefit of the wardrobe.
Try starting a bullet journal.
On the first on January this year, I decided to try this new trend called the bullet journal, and it was one of the best decisions of my life. In just the first couple of weeks of 2018, I have been able to get an exceptional number of things done in the same time frame as I would achieve nothing before.
The bullet journal is a cross between a planner, to-do list, calendar, and daily journal. It uses colours and symbols and codes to concisely break down every day, month, and year, so you can track anything you want to track. You can track your diet, mood, sleep, cash flow, goals, exercise, studies… anything. It also allows you to organise your time and resources effectively, keep track of multiple things at once, and allows you to reflect at the end of each day.
If you’re interested in creating your own bullet journal, there are many online walkthroughs which will help you do that, and in the coming weeks I’m going to make a post about how I created mine. The original start up takes only a few hours, and after that it’s only 5 minutes in the morning and evening each day to keep track of everything.
There are many other things you can do that will save you heaps of time over the course of your life, these are just my top 6 picks that I have implemented, or tried to implement into mine. I highly recommend all of the above methods if you want to boost your time efficiency and get a few years back!