5 ways to create more time to improve your life
There never seems to be enough hours in the day right?
They say “time flies when you have fun,” but it flies regardless; at light speed even.
Don’t you wish there was enough time in the day? Time to do everything your heart desired and then some?
Well, there is, but the catch is that YOU have to create it.
How do you create more time?
Well, in the literal sense you won’t be able to create a machine that will spurt out more than your 24 hours in a day. If that were possible, you would be both “rich” and “hated.” “Rich” because everyone would buy it and you would have to keep producing more time. And “hated” because once people realize that more time didn’t make them any happier than less time did, they will curse your name forever.
The way to create more time is by making better use of the amount you currently have.
You have to make due with less time because it is finite. You just don’t get that shit back!
With that said, Here are five ways to create more time:
#1. Acknowledge that you won’t have time for everything.
“This constant, unproductive preoccupation with all the things we have to do is the single largest consumer of time and energy” — Kerry Gleeson
It is so hard not trying to get thing everything done. Especially if you are ambitious, it will bruise your ego to suffer that “L” since you are not able to execute. But that’s how it goes sometimes.
You must quickly realize that you can’t be everywhere, you cannot be all to everyone, you cannot read everything, And the sooner you understand that, the better.
Acknowledging that you won’t have time for everything empowers you to prioritize what is best for you. Choosing activities that create more time instead of ones that suck it up (yes, you Facebook) is vital.
Once you prioritize the necessary tasks, you now equip yourself with a viable strategy.
The next thing that will happen when you acknowledge your lack of time is you can start to eliminate or delegate some items on your plate.
Eliminate what needs not to be done. And delegate the extra tasks to others, so you spend less time on them. In a 24 hour day (16, if you get 8 hours sleep) this saves you tremendous amounts of time.
Simply put, don’t major in minor things.
Minimize your schedule. Prioritize, Eliminate and Delegate.
#2. Do your hated task first.
Emmett’s Law: The dread of doing a task uses up more time and energy than doing the task itself.
“Life is denied by lack of attention, whether it be to cleaning windows or trying to write a masterpiece” — Nadia Boulanger.
“That which the fool does in the end, the wise man does in the beginning” — R. C. Tench.
We don’t like doing those “hated” tasks first because it is either hard, irritating, boring, makes us feel miserable, or we just don’t want to do it. Either way, this all creates long-term problems that if not remedied will only affect you.
*Hard — “Exercising”
Long-term problem: Issues with health. Lack of energy.
Solution — Exercise first thing in the morning or create a consistent routine.
*Irritating — “Impatience with others during commutes.”
Long-term problem: You might lose your shit and end up fighting fellow passengers. I grew up in New York City riding the Subways there. Those who don’t know the struggles of the train ride may not relate, but you can get irritated real quickly for just about anything.
Solution — Use headphones. Jam some tunes or Podcasts. Don’t let the irritations build up. I can’t tell you how many confrontations I avoided on the New York City trains if I didn’t have my music.
*Boring — “Eating right.”
Long-term problem: Too much bad food clogs up your arteries leading to other health issues. After all, you wouldn’t put shitty fuel in your car. So why put lousy food(fuel) in your body.
Solution — Use some creativity, cook different ways and learn about nutrition.
*Makes us feel miserable — “Having to fire someone”
Long-term problem: that person might end up costing you money.
Solution — Understand the reason for the action. If their performance is because of training, then get them the training. If it is beyond training, then cut those ties.
*Just don’t want to do it — “Meetings.”
Long-term problem: Might end up out of the loop.
Solution — Necessary part of your grind to find information and network. Take active roles in the meetings.
Deal with why you hate that task in the first place. Remember, everyone has boring shit they have to do. Think of a Rock Star. The life of traveling, making and performing music, making money, being famous and meeting people might seem glamorous.
On the other hand, they might hate flying, rehearsing, singing the same song, and not getting privacy. They do it for the bigger picture so that the easy stuff becomes rewards.
Break down your goals into quick achievable steps. Once you Prioritize your tasks, you will see the hardest one is the one that takes up the most energy. Get it done. This creates more time because as you jump into the task, the mental fatigue you get from not wanting to do it disappears because you are now taking action.
Avoid the low hanging fruit of doing the easy first. That’s hustling backward.
Do what’s important and keep it moving.
#3. Minimize interruptions.
I learned recently that once interrupted; it takes about 20 minutes to regather your focus. Once you lose that momentum, you lose a lot of time, and it is difficult to get it back.
My personal kryptonite is a combination of my smartphone and the couch. If I take a few minutes to sit on my comfy couch and pick up my phone simultaneously, it will take the jaws of life to pry me from that comfort zone.
To create more time I make sure to work in chunks (25, 35, 45 or 60 minutes) to stay focused and keep from interrupting self. This way I get a bulk of things done.
#4. Use standby time strategically.
Standby time is the time you are idle, or when you are in auto mode doing monotonous tasks that require no thought.
When I wash dishes, I listen to podcasts.
When I am waiting in line for anything, I read a few pages from a book.
When I am cleaning, I listen to music.
When doing laundry, I’ll catch up on videos or reading.
During the commuter time, I write articles or add to my book.
If watching TV — I will exercise during commercial breaks.
You get the picture.
You can create immense amounts of time because you are substituting that idle time for productive time.
#5. Turn off that damn smartphone.
As I mentioned earlier, the combination of the phone and my couch is my kryptonite.
Turn off that phone!
Turn off that phone!
Turn off that phone!
It is easy to lose time when it is being frittered away on the gadget.
I Once went on my phone to check my email for a minute and looked up and 5 hours passed. No joke. Those smartphones are addictive. I went from emails to websites, scanning to texting, social media to watching videos and just lost a lot of my day; then I immediately felt guilty wasting my time because I could’ve used that chance to play with my kids.
Phones are not going anywhere, anytime soon. It is a challenge not to be hooked on them. The dependence on the phones is helping and hurting us at the same time.
The time on your phones will need to be managed according to how you live your life.
Currently, I use an app called Moment that tracks my phone time and makes the most god awful noise when I go over it. My daily limit is 5 hours. I find it pretty useful.
However, Putting away that phone creates more time because you won’t get quickly sidetracked.
After I get my writing done and necessary email checks in I put my phone away for a few hours. This action is a baby step, as I am working towards the goal of going on a weekly 24-hour phone fast. That will be monumental but until then putting away that the will have to do.
Hope this content saved you some time.
As always please continue to be great.