6 Tricks For Finding Hidden Nuggets of Extra Time in Your Day
By Charles Hopkins
Published 10/23/2007 | Self Improvement
Weve all heard the adage time flies when youre having fun. Well,
heres something even truer than that -- time flies whether youre
having fun or not. And once its flown off to wherever time goes, itll
never come back.
Time is the one thing in life you cant stockpile, save for a rainy
day, hide under your mattress, or give to someone to hold for you. When
its gone, its gone. Adios, bye-bye, outta here.
The best you can do is make the most of the time you have in any
given day. And if youre like most people, you often wish you had more
There just doesnt seem to be enough hours in a day to get
everything done youd like (plus throw some fun in there, too). But
there are ways to find those valuable nuggets of time hidden throughout
As difficult as it may be to hear, you and I are masters at letting
valuable moments slip through our fingers and disappearing forever.
How many times have you heard yourself say Ill get to it in a minute"? Or dont worry, weve got plenty of time?
How about when youre at work and youve got a project to get done
by the end of the day? By the time youve gotten your coffee, said good
morning to your co-workers, checked your email, refilled your coffee,
and finally settled down to business - its really too close to lunch
to start anything serious.
Sound at all familiar?
Were all guilty of wasting time. But if youd like to get more
accomplished in your day and still find time to relax and have fun,
here are some simple tricks you can use starting right now:
1. Picture your day. Spend some time before your day or workday begins to list the things youd like to accomplish.
2. Decide to eliminate. Write down every single task you think you
have to do during your day. Then, one by one, decide if those things
are truly necessary or simply distractions. Scratch the distractions
off your list.
3. Prioritize your tasks. Next, decide which task on your list is most important then the next important, and so on.
4. Dont take the easy way out. Its tempting to do the easy tasks
first. Dont. By tackling the more difficult, urgent, or time-consuming
tasks first, youll be surprised just how easy the others will seem and
how quickly youll get them done.
5. One thing at a time. One of the greatest ways to lose time is
trying to do everything at once. Stay focused on one task at a time
until its completed. Then go on to the next. Youll be shocked at what
you can accomplish.
6. Its ok to say no. Its easy to get sidetracked when someone
asks for a favor. You want to be a good friend or coworker, so you drop
what youre doing to lend a hand. Chances are great youll never get
back to what you were doing. Simply tell them youll be happy to help
when youre finished with what youre doing.
There are still going to be plenty of days where you just dont
know what went wrong. You seemed extremely busy and yet you got very
On days like that, you might want to review all the things you
remember that might have stolen your time. Were you on the phone a lot?
Did you get caught up in a conversation with a friend? Surf the
Internet? Read all the funny emails you got during the day?
A million things can take you away from getting things done during
your day. Just notice them, then find ways to keep them from happening
again. Theyll become easier to recognize as time goes on.
If you practice the simple techniques suggested here, you wont
believe how much you can get accomplished in a day -- and how much time
youll have left for all the other things that bring you joy in life.