We all wish that we could find more hours in a day, but until someone is able to bend the laws of space and time, this isn’t going to happen.
However, what you can do is bend the ways you use the time you already have at your disposal. This will enable you to better manage your time for the things that really matter.
How to Find More Hours in a Day
1. Get Up Earlier
We tend to be most productive early in the morning – before other demands dictate our day. Therefore, if you usually wake up and get out of bed at 7 am, try getting up 30 minutes earlier at 6:30 am.
While that half an hour might not sound like much, it is time which can be used to exercise, read a book, meditate, finish off some work etc.
2. Avoid Checking Your Email So Often
Chances are that your clients and colleagues can wait a couple of hours for you to reply to their emails. If something is really urgent, they will no doubt pick up the phone and call you. Therefore, make sure you close your email client, and only check emails when you are on your break.
For some useful email productivity tips, have a look at this post.
3. Use Your Commute to Good Effect
The majority of people spend 30-60 minutes commuting to and from work each day; many spend even more. Therefore, it is paramount that you use your commute to do something useful.
If you drive to work, you can listen to audio books. If you take the train or bus, you can read a book or get a head start on work.
For those who work in an office rather than at home, the daily commute provides an excellent opportunity to find more hours in a day.
One of the best ways to find more hours a day is to prioritise.
Before focusing on the easier tasks, make sure that you get the most important tasks done first. After taking care of the important tasks, you will find that the smaller, less important tasks can be put off for another day where you have more time.
5. Cut Your Lunch Time in Half
An hour of lunch can easily be cut in half as it probably only takes you 15 minutes to eat. Therefore, do you really need that other 45 minutes? A further 15 minutes can act as a break, providing you with 30 additional minutes in a day.
Another great tip on how to find more hours in a day is to purchase your lunch on your way to work. This eliminates the time that is wasted by having to stand in queues and walking to and from the office in order to buy your lunch.
6. Break Free from TV
Switching the TV on as soon as you get home from work might be a great way to relax, but it is all too easy to waste hours slumped on the sofa.
Record your favourite TV shows and watch them when you have set aside ablack of time to unwind.
If your evenings seem to get taken up by a long list of household chores, see whether you are able to delegate some of the tasks. Your housemates, partner or kids can help out.
Even if you can only free up 20-30 minutes of time, this is 20-30 additional minutes which can be spent on something that is important to you.
8. Go Home on Time
If you are supposed to finish work at 5pm, but you don’t leave the office until 8pm, it is no surprise that you struggle to find more hours in a day.
With some jobs it is difficult to get away on time. However, if you only work late because you struggle to finish what needs doing during the day, have a look at your working habits and figure out a way to change them.
9. Stay Focused
Procrastination can be a real problem for those who want to be able to find more hours in a day, A few minutes surfing the internet, chatting, updating your Facebook status etc can all add up.
Therefore, when you are meant to work – work. If you find your concentration slipping, take a short break so you can come back to work with a laser-like focus.
We often get so caught up in our day-to-day established routines that we never sit down and think about everything that we are doing. Therefore, for this upcoming week, try jotting down every activity you engage in, as well as the time spent doing it. Then sit down and evaluate. This is one of the best ways on how to find more hours in a day.
Do you spend too much time shopping, watching TV, doing chores etc? If so, find a way to better structure your time – the book Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity is an excellent place to start.