Do you ever wonder where your day has gone? Why you didn’t get more accomplished? Or why you feel you wasted the whole day? Here are some of the biggest time wasters and how you can avoid them to regain some of your time back.
Social Media – Don’t get me wrong, I love social media but it can be a huge time suck. You might think you’re going to spend 10 minutes looking at something and before you know it an hour has flown by. Since I like to monitor how much time I spend on social media I’ll set a timer before I hop on. Once the timer goes off I’m done. Because social media is part of my job it has taught me to be more intentional in how I use it.
Procrastinating – If you can do something in 5 minutes or less, do it now. It’s a fact that the more you put things off the longer they take to do. For example if you hang your clothes up right away it only takes a few minutes but if you wait, now you have a pile of clothes and it can take 10 times as long. If something seems like a hard task and you’re having a hard time getting started then I would recommend breaking it up into small pieces.
Watching TV – There’s nothing wrong with watching TV but it can be a big time waste if it’s just mindlessly on in the background and it keeps catching your attention. Set aside time for your favorite shows then turn it off.
Not Having a To-Do List – I haven’t documented how much time I save with a to-do list but I know it’s substantial. Having a to-do list keeps you focused and on track. It’s easier to prioritize your day and week if you have documented the things you need to get accomplished. It helps me hold myself accountable and I work more efficiently.
Being Tempted by Distractions – One of the ways I avoid distractions is to set a timer and focus on the task at hand. It’s easy to get distracted but I find something that helps me stay focused, like music. It could be something totally different for you. Sometimes a reward at the end of an important task is good motivation. Do whatever you find keeps you motivated and distraction free.
Not Batching Errands – The best way to save time while running errands is to pick one day during the week and plan your errands by location. If you can plan your errands by location and time of day you might be able to avoid the busy times of day and save even more time.
Not Being Able to Find Things – Do you have any idea how much time is wasted everyday hunting for misplaced items? I don’t remember the exact number, but any time hunting for misplaced items is a waste of time. Have a “home” for every item in your house and make sure they are placed there. Think about where you use those items and store them accordingly.
Not Blocking Out Chunks of Time – Batch jobs at home or work like you batch errands. Block out times during your day to accomplish certain tasks. What time of day do you work best? Make your hardest or most important tasks during that time.
Overloading Yourself – As important as it is to accomplish as much as you can in one day, it is also possible to overload yourself. When blocking out chunks of time make sure you leave some time in between tasks to rest or incase tasks go over the allotted time. You’ll burn out quickly if you don’t give yourself some down time.
Not Shopping On-line – On-line shopping has been one of my biggest time savers. I don’t spend a lot of time in the grocery store and I don’t buy things I don’t need, so I’m saving money too. Amazon and other on-line shopping sites can save you a great deal of time in your day.
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