5 Quick Strategies to Turn Limited Time into Quality Time
For so many of us, time doesn’t fly, it just flat out disappears! Our 24-hour day seems never to be long enough, so here are five ways for you to get the highest quality out of this most precious commodity.
Make a Daily Plan
Sounds pretty painless, and it is! However, making a plan every day is so simple that it’s easy to forget, and it’s easy to think I got this! – and so there’s no plan! Take time at the start of your day to make a plan that includes not just a to-do list, but also blocks of time that you will give to your family and to yourself (to read, journal, exercise, garden, make art – you get the picture). You won’t receive a paycheck for the time you spend on yourself or with your family, but the rewards of making a way for this quality time are clearly invaluable!
Researchers are telling us that while multitasking can save time, it can also reduce the quality that you give to each task. So, choose your multitasking wisely – it’s fine to recite your presentation while you’re in the shower, or to listen to a podcast while applying your make-up. But when you’re writing your monthly report, silence your phone so that you can devote your full attention to that report. Your thoughts will flow better, and you’ll complete your task more quickly and easily.
It’s also important to focus on tasks involving yourself and your loved ones. When you’re doing your morning stretches, instead of thinking about your afternoon client meeting, focus on each stretch and how it’s strengthening your body. When you’re with loved ones, give them your full attention, whether that means listening intently or being fully involved in a fun activity with them!
Enforce Time Limits!
Every day you will have routine tasks – reading and responding to messages, preparing lunches and other meals, and household chores. Set time limits to each of these tasks, and then move on! You will be surprised at the meals you can prepare in less than 30 minutes, and at how well you can streamline chores so that they’re done in no time!
Take Time to Review
At least twice daily, take 5-10 minutes to mentally assess your activity, your accomplishments thus far, your mood, and what will keep you going. Does anything need an adjustment? If so, you can make small changes that will improve your performance for the rest of the day. These important few minutes of “review time” will result in your limited hours being the highest quality possible.
Take Time to Refresh
Morning stretches are great, as is any exercise routine that you maintain. Yet, throughout your day, you need to mentally escape from the projects and tasks at hand. Find a way to step away – go into another room, step outside, or put some headphones on with music and no lyrics – and let your imagination take over, even just for a few minutes. These short breaks will give you the “fresh” perspective and renewed mental energy that you need to make every minute of your day high-quality!