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How to Get an Extra Hour Out of Every Day (Hint: It's All About Your Habits)

There are 24 hours in a single day. You'd think that would be enough to get everything checked off your to-do list ... and yet, something always gets in the way. If you're left feeling exhausted and unsatisfied at the end of the day, try these personalized time-saving habits that will end up being lifesavers.

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We Can't Emphasize This Enough: Organization!

A clutter-free home is an efficient home. Each minute you spend looking for your keys or the television remote adds up. The average person will burn 55 minutes a day just looking for things, according to one study conducted by a Boston marketing firm. Yes, it's a reason to get more organized -- and the first step is getting rid of unwanted clutter.

 

A garage-wall organizational system allows you to see tools at a glance, rather than rummaging through a toolbox, for instance. Investing in a custom closet system with shelves and drawers can make it easier to wrangle all the pieces in your wardrobe. Nooks and cubbies can be the solution to an office space that's always scattered with odds and ends.

 

 

Here are tips for organizing every room of your home.

 

Recognize and Utilize Your Times of Peak Productivity

Are you an early bird or a night owl? Depending on the answer, you're more likely to get more things done in the early-morning or late-evening hours. Don't work against your nature -– work with it.

 

Over the course of a day, take note of when you feel consistently energized and when you start to feel a lull. (Does that midafternoon coffee sound familar?)

 

Take note of your most productive days in a given week, as well. A recent survey shows that for most people, productivity peaks between 8am and 10am on Mondays, and then dwindles over the course of the week.

 

Although, that isn't to say that this will ring true for you. When you've detected a pattern, use that energy to prioritize your most strenuous tasks, and leave the smaller, administrative to-dos for later. 

 

Recognizing your personal strengths (and weaknesses) will help you better plan your schedule and accomplish a set of tasks quickly and efficiently.

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Photography by: Annie Schlechter

Log Off

Fact: 900 –- that's how many times the average person checks his or her phone in a single day. And 162 minutes is how much time the average American spends on his or her mobile device every single day. Those sound like impossibly high numbers, but it's the factual irony of technology -– more than ever, it has connected us while disconnecting us from the real world (and sometimes, real responsibilities).

 

Here's what to do: Avoid spending a few idle minutes here and there over the course of the day scrolling through your social media feeds and checking your inbox. In fact, that's the worst thing you can do, as it causes you to lose track of time.

 

Instead, allot yourself a reasonable amount of time to check up on things like personal email, voicemails, and social media. You can download apps like Anti-Social or Freedom, which temporarily block access to your biggest time-wasting sites. Also, turning off notifications helps to resist the temptation.

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