Optimize Your Time

There are three ways to do this.

1. Timesaving

a) Lumping similar activities together saves not only time but also gas. For example, I mentioned grouping grocery shopping with mailing cards on one trip earlier. With the oil price at $4.50 per gallon, every extra mile we drive is money that could be saved.

b) Summarize your findings or conclusion in words right after the completion of the day’s task. Don’t type on your phone or laptop, write them down in a notebook and date the entry. Writing triggers brain signals that promote memorization. This is great for large projects that take a long time to complete, saving you the frustration of digging through your old files to find out where you left off. School kids should try this method, as it’ll make their lives so much easier when preparing for the exams.

2. Minimize distractions

a) Schedule a time slot for checking emails and web browsing. Turn your device off once outside of the allowed time. You might experience withdrawal symptoms, such as excessive worries that something terrible might happen while you are “offline.” Don’t panic, no one has died over this. You’ll live.

b) Set a timer for intense work, then relax once the time is up. This way you’re always at the top of your productivity chart.

3. Breakdown a complex task into mini steps and get them done during your idle time.I usually schedule my son, Ethan’s appointments on the same day with mine so I can get everything done on one trip to the medical office. While we wait for the appointment, I’ll be answering emails, and Ethan’ll be doing his homework. Don’t underestimate the 15 or 20 minutes here and there, it adds up.When Ethan was in middle school, the campus opens late on Tuesdays at 9:30 a.m. Since he usually arrives around 7:50 a.m., I checked out books he liked from the library and asked him to read while he waits for the school to start. For the three years he studied there, he finished about ten books just by optimizing the wait time!

Want to see how much more you can do by using the few minutes here and there every day?

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Dr. Ivy Ge

Dr. Ivy Ge

Doctor of Pharmacy, author of The Art of Good Enough and Life Transformation Journal. She writes to inspire women to design their own fate. Her writings and interviews have been featured on MSNBC, Thrive Global, Working Mother magazine, Parentology, and The Times of India.

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