Little Ways I Save Time

posted by Andrea | 08/16/2010

I’m a very busy person.

However, I choose my “busyness” because I LOVE busyness! I love trying to fit everything into my already tight schedule. I love getting involved with lots of different groups, trying new things, and growing my abilities. I love being productive and crossing off my to-do list. I even love the exhaustion I feel as I flop into bed and reminisce on eveything I accomplished that day!! I know. I’m a sick woman!

I do enjoy free time and I try to schedule some each day {is it bad if I schedule my free time?} however, the only reason I’m able to enjoy free time is because I plan ahead and am always looking for little ways to save more time and add hours to my day.

Here are some of little ways I save time each week:

  1. I clean as I cook: I put my ingredients away as I use them. I also fill the dishwasher as I go. I wash any dirty dishes and clean the counters while I stir or while the food cooks.
  2. I make freezer meals: At least once a month, I’ll prepare a few casseroles, meats, soups, baked goods, etc. in one day. I freeze them for nights when I am too busy to cook. {Check out OnceAMonthMom.com for great meal planning ideas.}
  3. I mark appointments immediately: Maybe I’m forgetful, but if I don’t write down the appointment date, time, location, and contact number immediately — I will probably forget. I can’t even tell you how many times this has saved my butt!
  4. I use online bill pay: I pay ALL my bills online. This save me SO much time and I never have to worry about late payments.
  5. I have routines: I try to schedule reoccurring tasks such as laundry, cleaning, grocery shopping, etc. on the same day(s) each week. This helps me plan my week and assures that every task is accomplished each week.
  6. I do nightly chores: Before I go to bed, I almost always pack my lunch, pick out my clothes, and go over my schedule for the day. {Yup, your kids should do this too.} Not only do these chores save me valuable time each morning, they also help me to sleep better — I told you, I’m crazy!
  7. I keep my gas tank full: This may sound ridiculous, but I hate stopping for gas when I’m in a hurry or running late. I try not to get below a quarter of a tank — which I found is also better for gas mileage {bonus}!
  8. I make lists: Yes, I always have ‘to-do’ lists,  ‘today’ lists, ‘tomorrow’ lists, ‘t0-buy’ lists — you get the picture! Each list helps me stay focused on what is important and eliminates wasted time.
  9. I look for quick projects: I always look for quick, 10-minute projects to fill any time gaps –always!
  10. What did I miss? What are your favorite little way to save time?

P.S. if you know anyone who is just sitting at home looking for something to do, send them my way and I’ll put them to work!

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17 comments

  1. Melissa

    08/16/2010

    This was a great list! I forget how all those ‘little’ things add up to be big time savers. And honestly, it’s when I’m busiest that I use my time more wisely. Thanks! Love your site : )

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Melissa! I know what you mean. The busier I am, the more I accomplish. It’s a vicious cycle!

    [Reply]

  2. Betsy (Eco-novice)

    08/16/2010

    I also have to write down appt. (and other things) immediately. Or they are completely lost in the bustle of the day. I like cleaning while cooking too. I actually like all the dishes I used to be clean before I eat the food. But now that I’m often refereeing while cooking, and averting near-disaster, well, the cleaning happens less often. Some days I feel like we’re all lucky to just have food to eat. My parents taught me to never let the tank go below 1/4. I haven’t run out of gas yet.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    If I have to write everything down now (when I’m young), I don’t want to know what I’ll be like in 30 years!

    [Reply]

  3. Margaret

    08/17/2010

    Good list! I had to laugh at #7. Not ridiculous at all. My father taught me that about 30 years ago when I was starting to drive. I hate having my gas tank below 1/4!

    [Reply]

  4. oh amanda

    08/17/2010

    Nightly chores is the best idea…one I need to institute! ;)

    Thanks for linking up!
    a

    [Reply]

  5. Tweets that mention Little Ways I Save Time « Simple Organized Living -- Topsy.com

    08/17/2010

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by oh amanda, Andrea Dekker. Andrea Dekker said: Here are a few simple ways I save time every day. http://ht.ly/2qnRq [...]

  6. Katie

    08/17/2010

    Great list…and I LOVE your blog!!!

    Because of your tips, I’ve started setting my timer for 15 minutes every day. I get SO much done during those 15 minutes. Thanks so much for your inspiration!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks for stopping by Katie. Glad I could give you some inspiration!

    [Reply]

  7. Ashley Pichea

    08/17/2010

    I’m like you – have to have something to do or I’ll go crazy. But I’m also lazy – I avoid certain activities like the plague because I know they will involve cleaning up a mess or working harder than I’d like to. It’s a strange “predicament”.

    [Reply]

  8. Andrea

    08/18/2010

    I always put reminders on my Google calendar that goes to my cell about an hour before an event. I’ve been VERY disorganized lately and this helps me so I don’t miss any appointments.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Great idea. I have to physically write things down…but I should probably start using more computerized reminders since I’m on the computer all day!

    [Reply]

  9. Heather

    08/18/2010

    I just finished reading “Declutter Your Life In One Week!” so many of these ideas are on my mind — I can’t believe I didn’t ever think to schedule household chores before?!? Seriously, if you don’t grow up with these routines, it can be a revelation to discover these tips and tricks!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Sounds like you are on the right track!! Way to go! Just keep making little changes and you’ll be amazed at the transformation.

    [Reply]

  10. mandi@itscome2this

    08/18/2010

    Great list!! I need to practice all of those a little better! Very curious about the 10-minute projects, so I’m off to check those out now:)

    [Reply]

  11. Deni

    12/30/2011

    Hi Andrea,

    I know this is a late comment/question, but I’m considering paying my bill on line and was wondering do you pay from a credit card or checking account to pay your bills? Thanks!

    Deni

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    I actually do both Deni,
    I pay as much as I possibly can with our credit card — because then we get the rewards. But there are a couple bills that will only allow us to pay online from our bank account. And, we obviously have to pay our credit card bill directly from our bank account as well.

    [Reply]

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