There never seems to be enough time in the day. Whether you’re shuttling kids to and from practices, juggling a job and a side hustle, struggling to get a healthy dinner on the table after work or squeezing in workouts in the wee hours of the morning, I think we can all do for more time in the day.
While that’s really not possible, it is possible to shave time out of everyday tasks and gain back a little bit of time every day.
Here are some of my favorite time-saving hacks that I use or have heard of others using.
- Meal prep is your friend. There are a few ways to do this. Block out some time on the weekend to prep your next week’s meals. Cook the meat, cut the veggies, boil the quinoa. Another option is to prepare tomorrow’s breakfast while tonight’s dinner is cooking. Or double that casserole dish so you have one to eat now and one for the freezer.
- Use prepared food for quick meals. I’m not talking about take-out here. Instead, grab pre-shredded chicken to add to salads. Find prepared veggie bowls in the produce section. Try out healthy meal kits. Yes, these are more expensive than cooking from scratch, however they are great time-savers.
- Plan your errands in advance. If you’re picking up your child from school, plan ahead and run an errand or two on the way. If you have to go across town, think about what other errands you can knock off while you’re there.
- Use Waze when out and about. Waze gives you where you need to go, faster, and it’s even better than the map apps currently on your phone. It uses real-time traffic to reroute you if an accident happens ahead of you so you can shave a few minutes off your drive time.
- Use a timer when you shop. This has been such a life-saver for me. Say you have five things on your Walmart list and you know where each item is in the store. Estimate how much time it will take you to grab and go and set a timer before you head inside. If you make it into a game, you’ll cut back on the browsing–and save money by not putting unneeded things in your basket.
- Check online before shopping. How often do you get to a store, only to find out that they’re out of stock on what you need? Instead, check the store’s inventory online before going. Even better, purchase in advance and just stop by the customer service counter to grab the items. No more wandering through those Target aisles!
- Go Audible. I love to read, but don’t do it nearly as much as I’d like. I use Audible to listen to books while I’m running errands and hauling kids around town.
- Order dinner online. If takeout is on tonight’s menu, use the restaurant’s app to order online on your way to pick it up. You’ll avoid standing in line to order and pay, and you won’t have to wait for your food to cook. It’ll be ready to grab and go!
What are your favorite time-saving hacks? The more you can save time, the more time you’ll have for the things and the people you love.