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Time management for one person can be hard enough but throw in two kids, sports, after school activities, and work and it can get tricky! We are always juggling practices, appointments, games, and work but we have found a few ways to save time. Here are some time management tips that help us save time and energy.
Hope you find them helpful!
1 – Get it on your calendar
If it takes up time, I get it on my calendar along with relevant details and send it to my husband so it’s on his calendar too. This goes for anything from school holidays, sports activities, appointments, dinner dates or even workouts. Doing this has made me feel more organized and efficient, and saved me time hunting information down. This also helps when I’m trying to plan something because I can see our schedule at a glance.
For school activities
At the start of the year I look at the school calendar and enter everything into my calendar in one big sweep. I mark “no school” days, minimum days, school breaks, band concerts, etc.
Funny story but I learned the hard way to mark “no school” days on the calendar. Once when my son was really young, I think in 2nd grade, I took him to school and when we drove up we saw no one was there. I played it off and said “Oh I knew there was no school — it was all a big surprise for a free day!”.
For sports activities
I also include relevant details in the calendar event too. For sports activities in particular, when we have travel baseball tournaments I’ll note “Paid” if I already paid the fee. We play a lot of tournaments so it can get confusing to track and I can’t always remember. Before I started doing this I can’t tell you how many minutes I spent tracking this information down every time the coach sent an email about getting fees in.
Another detail I enter is location address. It is so helpful particularly for sport events where the location always changes. When we’re heading out the door it’s wonderful to just click on the address on your calendar to map directions. Before I started doing this I’d hunt for the address from texts or emails, plug it in and then map it — this could be time saved!
2 – Make a list
I love making lists.
Making a prioritized to-do list helps me stay focused on what I need to take care of. Without one I feel unorganized and worried I’m forgetting something. I just jot it down in a note file on my phone.
Tech tip: I love having my phone write things down for me using voice-to-text! I use this feature a lot.
3 – Use Reminders
Use your calendar reminder feature to help you remember things. I find this very handy for keeping me on track or planning ahead.
Tech tip: I use an app called Pill Reminder to keep track of medicine. When my son is sick and has to take antibiotics this helps me remember to give his dose and lets me check off if it’s been taken.
4 – Get organized
“Everything in its place” — I always tell my kids if you put everything in its place after using it you’ll be able to find it right away. I feel like I’m channeling my mom or grandma when I say this! But seriously, looking for lost items is such a big time-waster.
I read an interesting statistic that the average person spends 2.5 days per year looking for things they can’t find which as a nation is $2.7 billion annually in replacement costs. Crazy!
Tech tip: You can use a Tile tracker for important things like your keys. Tile is a tiny bluetooth tracker that can help you find them if they’re lost. You can also use the “Find my iPhone” app to keep track of your phone.
5 – Prepare the night before
Mornings can often be hectic. We try to save time in the morning by laying out clothes and preparing whatever we can the night before.
My husband gets up for work early so he often takes a shower at night before bed. I prefer taking them in the morning but when you have to get up super early it sure is nice to have a little extra sleep!
Preparing the night before helps us save time getting ready and get out the door faster in the morning.
6 – Let everyone pitch in
One of my favorite sayings is “Many hands make light work” (another quote channeling my mom haha). Whether it’s sorting laundry or clearing the table while I start dishes, even the youngest of helpers can pitch in.
7 – Be ready to go
Have a travel toiletries bag packed with everything you need instead of pulling it together each trip.
I used to pack all our clothes a couple of days before the trip but wait until the morning, right before we leave, to pack our toiletries as we use them.
Recently I decided to pull all our toiletries together so it can just stay in the bag. I have an extra toothbrush, hairbrush, mini makeup kit, contact case etc that always stays in there. We have a bag packed like this for everyone in the family.
Now it’s so much easier to get ready for a trip because most of the stuff we need except for clothes is already packed! I just do a quick inventory when we return so I know what to replace.
8 – Make extras
Whenever I cook, I try to make a little extra to freeze. I’m making it anyway so it’s not too hard to add extra ingredients for a bigger batch. This is great because on busier days we can just heat something up.
Over to you
Do you have a time-management hack? I would love to hear your tips.