Have you ever sat down at the end of the week, and realised you just couldn’t find the time to do all the things you set out to do? Juggling work, household chores, reading and exercise all in one day can sometimes seem impossible.
We all want a better quality of life, so we must focus on what’s good. That consumer drive is why companies constantly look for and find ways to make people’s lives easier.
Even something as small as a milk box can often save you time and make life convenient. It can give you drinks on the go as you zoom around trying to fit in the million and one things that need to be done.
Here are 10 tips and tricks to free up your time for what’s good in life:
- Take a step back
The first and most crucial step is to take a step back and look at what’s good in your life and what could be better. You can ask yourself what you want to do more of, or what you want to change. Stepping back helps you prioritise what’s important and what’s not so you can find the time to do the things you want.
2. Create your perfect formula for a daily routine
Now it’s time to organise. Organising a list of tasks helps you achieve balance by ensuring things get done when they need to without eating up too much of your time. Daily chores can leave you exhausted and with little time to enjoy the weekend. Organising your time at the start of each week with a to-do list helps you plan to save. There are a bunch of mobile apps that can help you and many of them are free.
3. Do a little bit every day
Benjamin Franklin once said, “Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.” But don’t cram too much into one day and leave yourself exhausted. Instead, do a little every day, particularly the little chores you may save up for the weekend. Start preparing a few days in advance if you’re planning a dinner party, and divide your to-do list up over a few days. It will also help you to create a routine and give you a little extra time to kick back over the weekend.
4. Smart shopping
Creating the right lists and planning ahead saves money AND time. Most people only make one shopping list but having weekly and monthly lists helps to save you time. You put the rapidly expiring items on the weekly list, like vegetables and fruits, and the big quantity items, like long-life milk, cheese, cereals, and cleaning liquids, on the monthly list.
5. Take advantage of packaged goods
While you’re making your shopping lists be sure to include a good variety of packaged goods. Not only can they help keep your food safe for much longer but can make life so much easier. Packaged tomato puree, peeled garlic, canned pineapples – the list is endless. Some can even save you when you suddenly have to go out by providing a quick snack on the go. Milk and juice boxes for school runs are simple and convenient.
6. Batch cooking
YouTube and Pinterest have no end of helpful ways to cook food in batches so meals last you the whole week, which effectively translates to less time preparing meals and more time for you.
7. Keep it simple
We can be exceptionally ambitious in a world where everyone is always driving to do more, achieve more, and be more. It can be extremely beneficial finding ways to simplify our busy, hectic lives. Maybe we find three-ingredient recipes or keep a hobby simple instead of embarking on ambitious projects. We can improve the quality of our life by keeping it simple.
8. Exercise anytime, anywhere
Health and fitness are major concerns these days as we lead healthier lives to protect what’s good. But an hour a day can seem too much for our fitness routines. However, we could stretch while we vacuum, grocery bags become weights for a quick arm workout, we can walk short distances and even make exercise a game we play with our kids or pets. The office can be a fitness room with some squats, lunges or stretches at our desk every hour. It frees up time, makes it fun, and healthy bodies are healthy minds that help us work smarter.
9. Get help where you can
It may seem like an easy way out but don’t be shy to ask for help. The online explosion means there are all kinds of services that may help us plan events, fetch or deliver packages, or get the weekly shop delivered right to your door, or have it waiting for you when you arrive at the retailer. It’s smart and it saves tension and hours of research.
10. Take a holiday if possible, or disconnect if not
There is no time like downtime. Having time off work and away can relax you and increase productivity as you recuperate. If you don’t have that opportunity, then disconnect. We spend, on average, as much as five hours a day on our smartphones alone. We can make a conscious choice to switch off before or after work. Start small and let your device work for you by taking messages or hanging onto those texts until you’re ready to read and reply. Your e-mails will also still be there when you’re ready to reconnect.
Article courtesy of Penny Ntuli, marketing director of Tetra Pak South Africa