Suppose you’re like me; your day-to-day life can be a little repetitive. Sure, we have learned long ago to expect the unexpected but for the most part, Monday to Friday, particularly, look similar day after day and week after week. With that in mind, I want to save you time on the things you do every day. First, I took a look at the things I do every day and how I could make them more automatic or faster to tick off the list. I hope that by streamlining the process, I not only enjoy it more, it is my life after all, but I find little gaps in time—minutes just for me and what matters to me.
How do we streamline that whole process to score ourselves some more personal time, in the beginning, middle or end of the day? I have a few suggestions on that. Things that work around here and will work for anyone who wants to carve out those extra minutes actually to have a life. And yes, I can almost hear you screaming from the back. There are some considerations for those parenting children. Because, if school holidays has taught me one thing, it’s that those little folks will take your schedule and not only destroy it but dance on the remains. Haha.
How to save time on the things you do every day
The Daily Checklist
I created my own personal daily/weekly/monthly checklist for my life, this blog and my business. There are things that I know I need to do and a checkbox, so I know when it’s done. It’s simple; I made it in Canva and am using it on my iPad (GoodNotes, set up as a Digital Planner). But before I decided to use my iPad for more than an expensive desk ornament, I printed them off and had a clipboard for each that I piled up in a basket on my desk. Whatever works for you, I say. I like having a list that is already made of the basics; those must-do items. They don’t change. Why not save time on the things you do every day? And by having them there, I’m not second-guessing whether it’s done or not. Or if the free time I find myself with is actually free time or just me forgetting something.
The Clothes Hack
If you’ve seen my occasional Instagram Story (sorry, I try to be consistent. Apparently, it’s not in me to do so anymore), you’ll see I wear the same handful of dresses day after day. This works well for me at home in my office here because I don’t think about what I’m going to wear at all for the day. I wake up around 7 am, throw on a dress, make a coffee, and I’m sat in my chair by 7:30, ready to go. No mess, no fuss; save time every single day.
And sure, that’s not possible if you’re in an office outside of your home, but there are takeaways from it. Plan your work wardrobe and store it on a go-rack. A go-rack is something I think I invented where you keep a small number of clothes that work together so you can grab and go whenever and wherever. The clothes go straight back there when they’re washed, ready to go again. Find you’re not wearing something on the rack? Ditch it. You can be sentimental about other areas of your wardrobe but on the go-rack. That’s rule one of the go-rack. Haha.
Food? I’ve Got You
When it comes to food, especially snacks, having a plan works best for me and for when I have the kids here. I keep a few large jars of things like pretzels, biscuits, shapes or other snack type things that are ready to go on the bench when I’m babysitting or to pour myself a serve from if it’s just for me. There’s also a basket of pre-packaged snacks for the fussy ones, as well as some fridge baskets with fruits and other cut-up stuff. This works because as the kids get older (currently 4 to 10 years old), they start to help themselves.
Watch out for that, though, once m nephew ate 16 “hundreds and thousands” biscuits in one half-hour block of time with zero regrets. While he’s my eating hero, this isn’t ideal, more often than not, I put the jars out like a buffet, and they choose and put it in a bowl, supervised, and I return to what I was doing before. Other than popping some popcorn or buttering some toast, it’s all done in a few minutes. As far as food goes, I think the bulk of the work is done with the buying and putting away of them. I order meals for busy weeks for us (delivered, thank you internet), and if the school holidays are coming up, I buy up big to keep the constant stream of demands at bay.
Avoid the shops at all costs.
This brings me to my next point for saving time on the things you do every day. If you want more of your time for stuff that matters to you, avoid the shop at all costs. ALL COSTS. It’s a time-saving win, and it doesn’t mean giving up supporting your local businesses. Especially after COVID happened, there are so many options for ordering online, click and collect or delivery services. Even in my small town, I manage to avoid looking for a car park most weeks. Groceries, pre-prepared meals, services such as car washes, clothing, uniforms, fruit and vegetable boxes, catering, office supplies and more. Get creative with your searches. Use Facebook and Instagram to request to order online or email them. You can buy what you need on your own time and let it come to you. Easy peasy.
When you’re doing something, do it. When you’re not, put it aside. If you’re a parent, you can stop laughing now. Haha. But really, if you can be present doing one thing at a time, not only does it usually go faster, but you’re more present and attentive. When I start my day, I follow a guide track to set me up for the day. Then I move onto emails flagging things to come back to later in the day, followed by checking the socials connected to my business for any issues overnight. Step by step, I move from one thing to another. This processional style approach of putting one foot in front of the other helps me stay on track and avoid distractions. What can I say? I love a good distraction. And so, by practising being intentional, I actually create time for myself to do whatever I like. Which is, of course, the point of this whole post.
And that’s it. Those are my best tips for how to save time on the things you do every day. For now, anyway. I feel like this is the sort of thing that changes as your routine does. I hope it’s helpful to one of you, and there was an idea in there somewhere that will help you grab some of your time back from the day-to-day monotony. Because, if you ask me, finding and enjoying those moments are what make s a life. Sure, the big memories seem to stand out when you look back, but who doesn’t remember the little things. The day-to-day things that made you smile stopped you in your tracks or caused you to laugh. We want more of those; let’s go and get them.
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Hi! I’m Melissa Walker Horn. Around here, they call me Suger. I’m the Chief Blogger and doer of all the things here at Suger Coat It. Blogging since 1901; I love a casual ootd, taking photos, and writing about things that irk or inspire me. I love wine and cheese, long days at the beach and spending time with my family. I make stuff for the internet over at Chalkboard Digital. You know, living the sweet life.