Thank you Sam's Club for sponsoring this post. As always, all thoughts, opinions, and experiences are my own.
Finding extra hours in your day is essential. At least it is for me, so I'm assuming it's important to all the other #adulting confused millennials out there. As a full time entrepreneur, I wear a lot of hats. Between writing for my blog and contributing to Forbes, taking and editing photos, pitching brands, marketing all of said content, consulting with brands for their own millennial target campaigns, public speaking, and working 1-1 with aspiring bloggers and coaches, you could say my hands are a little full. Even with all these hats, I still find time to go to the beach almost every single day, watch 6-10 hours of television, and hang with my pup and the hubs (there's a reason I write about work-life balance on Forbes).
With all of that said, I need to find ways to create extra hours in my day all the time.
3 Ways To Find Extra Hours In Your Day:
Multi-task (when it makes sense).
Okay, okay, I knowww all the research basically says multi-tasking is is basically Lucifer reeking havoc on your productivity, but hear me out. If you can multi-task when it makes sense, then you need to do it.
For example: In the past, I've shared how I stay motivated and on top of all the things, and break down my schedule. A schedule that includes watching The Today Show from 7 to 10 or 11 every morning and The Ellen Show on repeating from 3 to 4 then again from 4 to 5. That right there accounts for at least 5 hours of television watching every day. However, I am not just watching television, during the morning, I am working on content promotion, social media, and emails. During the afternoon, I am working on those things or working out or snuggling with the pup while watching Ellen. In other words, healthy multi-tasking. I am lumping low value (meaning low focus/energy exertion) tasks together to create a balance that works for me.
Multi-tasking becomes harmful when you are switching tasks often. That's where you lose productivity. If I am writing a blog post, then getting distracted by an email, then a text, then go back to writing, then get distracted by something on social… well you get the point. It's a vicious cycle that's a productivity suck. Task switching is totally different than cognitive role transitions, which can actually be the key to a healthy multi-task.
Plan. Schedule. Repeat.
I know everyone boasts about pre-planning and scheduling when talking about finding more hours in your day, so I won't bore you with the normal. Instead, I want you to think outside of the box when it comes to planning and scheduling your life. Figure out what “chores” you have to get done in a given week and figure out how you can cut time or energy from them.
For example, if you've ever been to a big box store (like Sam's Club), you know what a major time suck it can be! I always get distracted by the fun goodies up front, and then the expansive aisles leave me wondering if I'm forgetting anything. Often times, I find myself running back to get that one item I just remember but can't find. Seriously, I can spend forever looking at all the things and debating whether or not I need them.
Good for my schedule? Absolutely not.
Sam's Club now offers Club Pick-Up! I can place my order on-line. Go to the store, find the kiosk, enter my order number, and pick it up at member services! Easy peasy!
If you have a Sam's Club near you, I would definitely recommend signing up to save time! Plus if you sign up here you get a $20 gift card and $20 Instant Savings Book (coupon book) package!
In addition to finding awesome services like Club Pick Up, consider delegation. As a business owner, it can be hard to know when to hire out or delegate, so a good general rule of them is to determine how much delegating would cost you ($10 per hour for example), and how much you value your 1 hour of time (i.e. could be earning or setting up revenue generating opportunities in that hour).
Identify “Waiting” Tasks
Business owners know that awkward 10-15 minute period before a meeting or waiting for an appointment. Some use this time to prep for said meeting/appointment, but I never can do that. By nature, I am not typically a procrastinator, so if I am reviewing notes just before a meeting it actually can give me more anxiety. I read through my bullet points of things I want to accomplish, but that generally takes five minutes.
Identify what tasks you can do while waiting, that you can easily pick up and put down, and won't cause any unexpected stress. For example, clearing out the “promotion” or “social” folders in email (not your actual email!), engage on social media (only if it's not a stress trigger for you), use the meditation app on your phone, send a quick thoughtful message to someone in your personal life. A general misconception about work-life balance means the two are segregated, but in reality, the two co-exist. Balance comes from creating time for all the things that fuel your soul, and those 5-10 minute gaps are a great time to feed it.
Practices these three things really give me so much more time in the day. I can tackle all the different roles I play in my business, while still doing stuff like hanging out with my pup and the hubs. Nothing is better than having the freedom to be productive and focus on things that matter. I know some people say work life balance is a unicorn, but take it from me, it's not. It's totally achievable if you figure out what tasks you place value on and utilize these time saving tasks!
Have you used Sam's Club pick-up? Or
Do you have any time saving tasks that help you find extra hours in the day? Share them in the comments!