One of my favorite quotes about time is penned by the fabulous C.S. Lewis, “The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of 60 minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.”
More than anything I wish I had 12o minutes an hour. I really do. In fact, recently my 6-year-old son asked me what my superpower would be if I were a superhero. Without hesitation I responded, “freeze time.”
Masked in secrecy I’d flick my hand and life would pause, except of course for me. I’d then empty out my email inbox, fold the laundry, mop the kitchen floor and maybe even take in a quick romantic comedy before I’d twist my wrist again and resume right where I left off.
But let’s be realistic. I am not a a superhero. (Sigh.) If I am to conquer each of the 60 minutes in each of my hours, I must figure out better ways to get more done in less time.
Lucky for me, I know some time hacks. Lucky for you, I’m sharing them today.
1. Use machines. This seems simple enough doesn’t it? We live in a time where massive amounts of technology surround us. Most of us don’t have to wash our clothes by hand, or even our dishes. But are you using your machines? I have found a good way to use my washing machine and not ‘forget about it.’ I simply make sure I cycle the laundry with each meal.
There are many apps available for smart phones that makes our jobs simpler and easier too. You can systematize grocery shopping, financial budgets, even exercise, allowing these apps to do the work for you.
2. Combine like tasks and errands. Do your best to batch similar tasks together. Clean all the bathrooms at the same time. Make all your phone calls in one sitting. Run all the errands on one day. Write a week’s worth of blog posts in one afternoon. Rather than running random errands, save all your driving for one day. This saves you time and effort!
3. Work from a list. There is nothing worse than waisting precious time, staring at your computer or messy space, not knowing what exactly needs to be done. So often we get bogged down by really long to-do lists. Keep it simple. Write down the six most important things to do each day. Prioritize them by order of importance and focus on just those things. (Find a free “6 Most Important List” printable at MOMentity.com.)
4. Race yourself. Set a timer and race against the clock to get tasks done, or only give yourself 15 minutes to check-in on Facebook. Not only can this trick work for you, but it helps your kids work toward completing their tasks too. I’m always surprised just how fast I can clean a room when I know I only have 10 minutes to get it done.
What time hacks work for you? We’d love to hear about them. Or have you really figured out how to freeze time? (And if you have, I still want to hear about it!)
Nicole Carpenter helps women lost in motherhood find their identity and chase their dreams while they still nurture their family. Nicole is a mentor, speaker and founder ofMOMentity.com, a blog and online community for mothers, reaching out to moms in over 7 different countries. She is a columnist for Family Focus (formerly Motherhood Matters) on KSL.com and the creator of the Define Your Time™ time-management course that helps women manage their time, balance their life and get more done. But her most important role is that of ‘mommy’ to her four kiddos and ‘wife’ to her college sweetheart.