Time can go unbelievably fast.
Days often seem to whizz by in a blur of mundane tasks and work commitments before you’ve had a single moment to yourself – so imagine how nice it would feel to get everything done and out of the way before the evening.
What would you do? Cosy up and read a book? Watch a film? Take a leisurely stroll in the twilight?
If you have a job, children, spouse, pets and a house to look after – as so many of us do, the idea of having time to do these things everyday probably sounds laughable.
According to research by the University of Maryland in the U.S., women today rack up an average of 18 hours of chores a week on top of working 36% longer hours than their mothers did. It’s really no wonder 60% say they would like to have a little more time to themselves in the day.
1. Avoid distractions at work
According to researchers at The Breathing Space Institute in North Carolina, U.S., workers spend less than 60% of the eight-hour working day being productive. Distractions in the form of nattering colleagues, broken technology and unnecessary tasks apparently take up the other 40%.
Linda D. Henman, Ph.D. recommends doing the least appealing task first thing in the morning to knock it off the list before that inevitable afternoon slump. This way you avoid spending your evening finishing off a tough task when you can barely keep your eyes open.
2. Have social media-free days
If you’re prone to checking your emails or Facebook account feverishly throughout the day then you could be severely cutting your productivity and reducing your chances for a bit of ‘me-time’ later on. According to the Mayo Clinic, women spend one out of seven minutes at work checking and responding to social media messages.
Suzanne Peterson, Ph.D. suggests choosing a couple of days in the week to ban yourself from social media sites. You might find that once you wean yourself off this bad habit, you get through work or chores speedily with time to spare at the end.
3. Have a spring clean
Dedicate one Saturday to cleaning out unwanted junk (think charity shops, car boot sales and, if all else fails, the rubbish tip) and sorting out papers.
According to University College London researchers, women spend up to 188 hours every year looking for things they’ve lost in the house.
Once you’ve cleared out miscellaneous junk, your keys, socks, passports and mobiles will have nowhere left to hide and you can get out of the house, onto the plane and into that beach-side deckchair for your holiday as swiftly and efficiently as possible.
If you have trouble managing your time effectively, you might benefit from the help of a life coach. Life coaches can work out strategies to help you take control of your life and organise those things dragging you down and preventing you from being as happy, healthy and successful as you’d like. Find out more by visiting our Personal Development page.
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