We’ve all had days where we feel a little rushed and can’t be bothered with things like breakfast, a workout, or that supermarket shopping you’ve been putting off. Make all those chores easier with these time-saving tips.
10. Pay Your Bills Automatically
If you’re sick of taking time out of your day to slog through all your bills, you can make your life a lot easier with automatic, recurring payments. With auto-pay, email alerts and a good budgeting program, you can make the process a lot easier. Already got auto bill pay? How about automatic bill reduction? We all know a simple phone call could reduce your bills, so there’s no reason not to give your service providers a call and ask for a better deal.
9. Improve Your Long Commute
Your commute to work doesn’t have to be a boring trek down a highway full of traffic. Not only is there an art to finding a better route, but there’s an art to using that time wisely, too. You can outsmart traffic with a few apps and beat your boredom with something like podcasts, or even get work done with a voice recorder. If you wanted, you could learn a new skill while you commute — a new language, for instance. Photo by kusuriuri (Shutterstock), Fontana (Shutterstock), Lilkar (Shutterstock), and Nelli Shuyskaya (Shutterstock).
8. Learn To Read Faster (And Fit It In)
Whether you’re reading for pleasure or have mountains of textbooks to wade through for school, reading is one of those things we never feel like we have time for. It is possible, though: with a bit of effort, you can easily fit reading into your busy schedule. And if that isn’t enough, use some simple techniques — like not saying words in your head — to actually read faster and get through those books. Photo remixed from silver-john (Shutterstock) and gladcov (Shutterstock).
7. Speed Through Laundry (And Getting Dressed)
Whether it’s putting on a tie in the morning or washing those clothes when you get home, clothing-related chores can make nudist colonies pretty appealing. We’ve shown you a ton of ways to speed up laundry before, and getting dressed and out the door in the morning is just as easy. You can tie a tie in only five seconds and shoes even faster than that — not to mention getting rid of wrinkles in clothes with a damp towel if you don’t have time for ironing. After all, it makes a big difference in how you’re perceived at work. Photo by bark.
6. Cook Better Food In Less Time
If the idea of cooking a real, honest-to-goodness meal just fills you with dread (whether because you hate cooking or you just don’t have the time), fear not: you can overcome. We’ve shared 10 easy dishes and drinks everyone can make at home, not to mention the even-easier tricks for people who hate cooking. For the time-crunched, breakfast can be the toughest meal, though — but it’s one of the most important. The best way to keep breakfast in your routine is to prepare it all in advance, whether it’s oats in jars or a batch of egg sandwiches in a muffin tin. Photo by Gatanass.
5. Get Your Shopping Done, Stress-Free
Somewhat related to cooking, shopping — particularly supermarket shopping — is one of those time-consuming activities we never want to do, but have to. There are a lot of apps that can help you get through the store faster, and getting food online can be a great way to cut down on shopping, too. If there’s one thing I personally found helped the most, though, it’s planning the week’s meals in advance. If you know what you’re going to eat ahead of time, you only ever have to go shopping once and you won’t be rushing to the store because your pantry is inexplicably empty. Illustration by Dominick Rabrun.
4. Sleep Better Without Sleeping Longer
If your sleep schedule is suffering, you might need more sleep — or you might just need better sleep. If your sleep cycle is a mess, you may need to give it a full reboot before you figure out how much is right for you. But once you do, giving yourself the right environment, preparation and timing will get you to sleep better so you need less of it. And if that isn’t enough on occasion, you could always grab a scientifically sound power nap, too. Photo by Mislav Marohnić.
3. Keep The House In An Always-Clean State
When we start feeling too busy, cleaning is one of the first things to go. But keeping your house clean doesn’t have to take any time, as long as you remember to do it. Heck, when you need to, you can clean your whole house in 15 minutes — but a better solution is to just clean for 15 minutes a day. Even if the house isn’t clean after those 15 minutes, over time, it will be. You don’t even need to keep it spotless, either — just in a 20-minutes-to-clean state. And if all else fails… well, you can always fake it, too. Photo by Maarten Takens.
2. Fit In a Workout, No Matter Your Schedule
You don’t need to waste hours a day at the gym to stay fit. Depending on your goals, you can often get in a good workout in 30 minutes or less, whether its interval training, bodyweight exercises, or a little combination of everything. Check out our guide to fitting a workout into your busy schedule for tips on staying motivated and you’ll find it’s easier than you thought. Image by Taylor Medlin (The Noun Project), Leremy (Shutterstock), Official U.S. Navy Imagery, and The Noun Project.
1. Escape The Cult Of Busy
Chances are, you’re not really as busy as you think you are. All it takes is a few small modifications to turn a seemingly-packed schedule into something you can work with, and while it sounds like a cop-out, the best way to make time for yourself is to just erase “I don’t have time” from your vocabulary. If you make these things a priority, you’ll get them done — sometimes it’s as simple as that.