Cart - $0.00

5 ways to find an extra hour EVERY day

April 6th, 2014 | 3 comments

1166690Isn’t the end of Daylight Saving blissful? (Unless, of course, you have very young children, who appear to be up even earlier than usual).

All day, you’re glancing at the clock thinking, ‘Oh! Is that all it is?’ and time seems to be stretched. It’s only one hour, but it feels like longer. You can pack more into the day, get more done, sleep more, relax… it’s magical!

Alas, it only happens once each year, but there are lots of things we can do to create more time every day – or at least the illusion of it. Here are five:

Curb social media

Jump onto the Facebook Time Machine and find out how much time you’ve spent on the website. Once you’ve recovered from the shock, make a new rule. No Facebook before 8pm. Or no Facebook after 8pm. Or none during the week. Or none at all.

Use an application like Keep Me Out to help you stick to this. You set the rules, it enforces them.

Let people do things differently

The belief that ‘nobody does it as well as I do’ can fill your days with unnecessary tasks. Hoarding work because ‘it’s quicker just to do it myself’ spreads onto the home front, where you’d rather do things ‘properly’ than watch someone else take longer or do it differently from the way you would.

Becoming comfortable with people’s different approaches to things that really don’t matter in the long run will save you bucketloads of time (and angst). Let it go.

Drop ‘I’ll just…”

I’ll just do the washing. I’ll just tidy my desk. I’ll just check Facebook. I’ll just read this one article… I’ll just, I’ll just, I’ll just…

At the end of a day of ‘justs’ you’re inevitably behind on your work, staying back late or staying up late to catch up.

Have some ‘non-negotiables’ in your week.

Whether it’s picking the kids up from school each Friday or swimming or running or having a long soak in the bath with a book, catching up with friends, coaching a sports team or something else – establish a routine of self-care. Book appointments with yourself first and don’t allow other pressures to encroach on this time.

When you have a reason to leave work and a pre-scheduled commitment, you’re more likely to prioritise during the day in order to meet it.

Cut corners

I once decided to drop ironing everything except school uniforms. Then I dropped ironing those too. At the end of the semester the school report said that my daughter was “always immaculately presented”. That was enough for me! I probably get the iron out five times a year for special occasions now (although it should be said that my husband irons his work shirts).

It’s not about being lazy, it’s about choosing to do something that you decide is more important. For me, that’s spending time with the kids and writing.

What can you cut and out of your life to squeeze an extra hour into every day (which is an extra 15 days every year!)

If you’re keen to take a guided course in changing how you do things, try My 15 Minutes.

Free! 7 types of busy

Untangle yourself from doing too much

3 people have commented
  1. Karyn Walker says:

    The Monday motivation I needed, as usual Emma! I’m so guilty of the “I’ll just…’ and the “it’s quicker if I do it…” and losing hours upon hours doing ‘stuff’ and feeling like I haven’t made a lot of progress on the things that matter most to me. I cut out ironing a long time ago (yes, except for special occassions and am very comfortable with that), and your article gave some other great suggestions.

    I had a chat with the kids a few weeks ago about how we can do mornings better to get out the door earlier, which means they get a morning play with their friends. Miss 9 and Miss 6 are now putting much more effort into getting breakfast, packing their lunches and bags, finding all the things they need themselves before screaming out for help – and even Master 3 is having a crack at it all! It’s not always pretty but is making a huge difference to how all of our days are set up. Importantly, I think it is helping us to appreciate what we can control and influence to get what we want in life. They also have a stronger appreciation that despite our best efforts stuff can get in the way (like when toilet training Master 3 “didn’t make it” right as we are about to leave!) and we just have to roll with that but know we did everything we could. Arrived 8 minutes before bell today – smiles and high-fives all round!

    Just to be clear – your blog is not an “i’ll just…” but a “must” for Monday monrings! Thanks heaps! Have an amazing day

  2. Cajetane says:

    One guideline I came across from Maria Forleo was ‘create before you consume’.
    This, I LOVED. Now, when I have time to myself, I get stuck into my writing projects FIRST, and then I allow myself to go on social media to catch up, research or learn.
    It’s been a really helpful switch. Yes, the blogs I follow and newsletters and articles I receive are very valuable, but unless I USE what I gather, there’s no point.
    So I create first, then I consume some more and it sets up a positive cycle.
    I think the key is that (a) my energy is put directly into something that will have a tangible outcome and (b) if/when I do run out of time or energy or I’m too uncomfortable sitting down any longer, that’s okay, I can get up and go on to something else without guilt because I haven’t ‘wasted’ my time, I’ve hit the priority up first.
    I have to constantly remind myself of this, but the alternative is feeling like a naughty child by having to use Leechblock or whatever. Seriously, am I a grown up or not?

  3. Emma Grey says:

    Fab stuff, Karyn and Gaetane!

    It’s such a great step to equip people around us to do things, and also to jump into the ‘big stuff’ first ourselves. Otherwise it just gets pushed lower and lower on our list.

Your comment...