How to make time! 4 ways to make time out of thin air!
It may be easier than you think to create time out of thin air. I realize that if you have made it past this first sentence you may think that I’m crazy and to some extent you may be correct, but give me five minutes to explain how I create more time every day. It all starts with the willingness to be more productive and then the drive to take your organizational management activities and skills to the next level. Let me explain four simple ways to create time.
Never schedule a meeting!
That’s right I never schedule a meeting! If you were to look at my calendar for Monday and Tuesday you might argue with me because I have a total of 14 meetings scheduled these two days but the fact is I have only spent proximately five minutes total in scheduling all 15 of these meetings.
Let me explain. Awhile back I had hired a coach (Jeff Brown) to help me develop the specific skills that I was lacking. I had received a brief induction from a friend and was then directed to his scheduling platform to select a date and time which was most convenient for me and which he was available for the meeting. The entire process took about two minutes. Meeting scheduled. I have since begun using this meeting schedule application for all of my various meetings. The application which Jeff and I use was developed by Tope Awotona and is called Calendy. There are a dozen other scheduling platforms which are free or relatively inexpensive and the time savings is in measurable. I am able to schedule 20 to 30 meetings, all unique, and with different individuals in little to no time. I will never go back to emailing back-and-forth for scheduling. I estimate that this saves me approximately 20 to 30 minutes a day in fewer emails alone.
Always auto pay.
When running your own business or life for that matter there always seems to be another application or monthly fee that has to be paid. This statement is becoming even truer as the world transitions into a greater and greater digital economy. $5 for this, $10 for that, and $32 for an annual fee. With so many apps and computer-based resources piled on top of all of the rest of our bills, the time it takes to make payments is becoming greater and greater. My suggestion is to reduce the needed time to pay bills and select auto pay. The conservative tendency is to pay month-to-month or as needed but the fact of the matter is nearly every service will allow you to cancel mid month.
So you might be asking yourself, “How do I regulate overspending if my finances are linked to auto pay?” Schedule in your calendar two 10 to 20 minute bill review sessions per month. For example a 10 minute review session on the 15th of the month and another review session on the 29th for 20 minutes to manage and track your finances. In addition, if you select the 29th as one of your review dates you will be able to cancel the service that you are no longer in need of before the first of the month. At the same time, if you have a review session on the 15th of the month (or some time in the middle) track any service not used in the first 15 days and flag it for eventual elimination later on in the month.
Create email templates.
It may sound impersonal to set up email templates but the fact is, email in and of itself is one of the most personable means of communication available. Any regular recurring event, project, or report should have an established email template. An example would be: “It is time for our monthly board meeting, I have scheduled meeting for ——–“filling the blank”——. Anywhere you can set up protocols and structure to eliminate your need to continually re-create the same project or document will allow you flexibility and free time to work on the aspect of your business which makes you unique. You can store these templates in Evernote, drop box, or even in an email folder within your email inbox. Whichever method you use make sure that it is efficient and convenient for you as you move out your work and life goals location and virtually.
Record yourself whenever possible.
In today’s digital world the ability to translate auditory sound into written word is becoming a greater and greater reality and means to become more efficient. As someone who writes, I am not advocating the elimination of the pen and paper or the keyboard but there are frequently times when recording audio and later transcribing it into text will save you loads of time. Recording your thoughts and processes and later having an assistant or a VA translate it into written word is one way to reduce your time spent writing. In addition, taking your thoughts and putting them down on an audio track will allow you to have greater free think abilities than you would otherwise have due to the lack of ability for the hands to keep pace with the thought process of the mind.
Use your smart phone. In today’s age most every smart phone is capable of translating directly your auditory voice into text. Using this feature to save time when you otherwise are not available or sitting in front of a computer will help you become more efficient.
Record your audio and send it out for translation service such as Rev.com. This service will translate any audio recording into a written document with proper punctuation markings and locations.
Putting these suggestions into play will allow you to spend your time on more desirable activities and allow you to use your unique abilities use the tasks that makes you valuable. An important aspect to remember here is that creating organization and systems continually will allow you to be more efficient in addition to upping your value both personally and professionally. And make time out of thin air!