When I was a kid and stuck at school, the days seemed to drag on forever. I remember staring at the clock above the chalkboard, wondering why the hands were moving so slowly. Once the bell rang, I’d jump up from my desk and rush home to do something a heck of a lot more fun than sitting at school.
Now that I’m an adult, it seems like time moves a lot faster than it did back in elementary school—I find myself going to bed at night thinking of ten other things I could have done during the day if I’d had more time. It’s funny how that works, because I have the same 24 hours a day that I had when I was a kid, but it never seems like enough.
The Lack of Time Excuse
Lack of time is one of the biggest complaints that people have about their life: “I’d love to start exercising, but I don’t have enough time.” “Finishing my degree is a great idea, but I don’t have enough time to go back to school.” “I’ll paint the house when I have a little bit more time on my hands.”
How you use your time is up to you—it’s your decision—but you can probably think of any activity and there’s someone out there claiming that they’d do it if they had more time.
I know people who went to college in the evenings while they held down full-time day jobs, I know people who worked two or three jobs to make ends meet because they had to do it in order to survive, and I know people that sit around their house all day and complain that they don’t have enough time to get things done. Pretty funny, really, when you look at it that way.
If you want to make any sort of change in your life, you need to learn how to manage your time. People who know how to manage their time wisely are usually a lot more successful than people who don’t. “Lack of time” is usually a good way to let yourself procrastinate.
Here are a few easy ways that you can add a bit more time to your day. Think of these tips as time management hacks:
#1- Stop wasting time on the internet.
It’s easy to sit down at your computer to check email only to wind up watching YouTube videos and checking out Facebook photos of people you knew in high school. If you constantly find yourself wasting time on the internet, get up and walk away.
It’s not really as bad as it sounds—somehow we all survived before the internet was invented, and it’s okay to avoid it for a few hours.
#2- Don’t go overboard with TV.
There’s nothing wrong with watching a few hours of TV each week, but when you sit down with the remote it’s easy for one show to become three or four. Record your favorites—most of us have a DVR these days—and fast forward through the commercials. A one hour show without the commercials is only about forty-five minutes long.
#3- Avoid video games.
The amount of time people waste playing video games amazes me. Some of my friends literally stay up all night long playing games on their Xbox. Supposedly some of the games for younger kids are educational, but there’s really no point to most other games, especially if they’re keeping you from getting important tasks accomplished.
#4- Watch your sleep.
Sleep is obviously necessary in order to function, but you don’t need ten or eleven hours of sleep each night. I’ve found that getting too much sleep actually makes me drag throughout the day. Go to bed and get up at a reasonable hour, and you’ll find yourself with a lot more energy.
#5- Listen to audio books or podcasts.
I like to multitask by listening to audio books while I drive or go out for a run. It’s a good way to learn about business or other skills that you’re working on while you do something else.
If you want to know more about time management, I recommend you read my post about how to manage your time while traveling and having fun. Also you might want to take a look at this article that helps fix four bad time management habits.
Finally… I know a number of people have their own methods for “creating more time.” So if you have any, please share them in the comment section below.Take Action. Get Results.