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How to Save Time

  • July 18, 2016 3:33 PM EDT

    Would you like to have an extra hour in every day? How would it feel to have plenty of time to accomplish what needs to get done every day? Each of us starts our day with the same amount of time, and we get to decide how we spend it. In reading articles on time management, I discovered two main areas of focus. One was how to create systems and shortcuts to be more efficient with your time on daily tasks. The second strategy was to make deliberate choices on how you spend your time in a way that reflects on what is important to you.

    I think the easy and logical path is to plan ahead, create systems, get rid of clutter, and make specific to do lists to manage your time. These are frequently the first steps in traditional time management. Ideas that can help in time management include:

    • Plan your weekly menus. You will save both time and money at the grocery store. You will reduce the number of extra trips to the store and you will have healthy snacks and lunch stuff ready to go every day.
    • Cook in batches. Make enough food for leftovers and to freeze for another week. This gives you an easy healthy food option on a busy day.
    • Get rid of clutter. It is easier to focus when your physical area is clear. No clutter makes it easy to find things, you spend less time searching, moving piles around or repeatedly sorting through things.

    The other time management strategy is to pause and examine how you are actually spending your time.

    Here are some questions to help you clarify where you want to spend your time:

    • Are you spending your time on high value activity?
    • Do you find joy in your daily routine?
    • Are there things you want to stop doing or get rid of?
    • Are there areas that you want to devote more time to?

    Annie Dillard wrote, “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” The choice is yours. You can learn to catch yourself before things catch and entangle you. Try to apply mindfulness — intentional and nonjudgmental consideration — to everything you do, say, and think, and before you blindly react.

    Instead of keeping a running list of things we should do or need to do, stop and reflect on what things you want to do that enrich your life and nourish you. Turn your to do list into a “what matters most list”.

    Need more ideas on how to achieve your specific wants and needs around time management? Schedule a complimentary session with Coach Gwen