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Save Minutes Of Your Time And Go On Holidays :)

  • Reading Time : 3 minutes.
  • Saved Time : an awesome lot !

The other day, when re-watching the movie “The Informant!”, I stumbled upon this :

The main character learnedly explains that he saves time by multitasking : for instance he flosses during the 20 minutes window the conditioner is on his hair in the shower.

At first it might seem really trivial : saving 1 minute from flossing every day, why would you bother ? That does seem like a stretch, doesn’t it?

But after mentioning Chris Gaborit’s time management philosophy in this article, the other day, I must admit it hit me. And yes, saving minutes is a significant time-saving practice. Explanations.

Time savings add up…

Let’s imagine you indeed save 1 minute a day from this sort of multitasking. After a week, you saved 7 minutes, after a month 30, after a year 365, after twenty years 7300. There are 1440 minutes in a day, so that means after 10 years you saved yourself about 5 days. That’s a small holiday trip, obtained just from flossing in the shower !

Of course, multitasking can save you way more than 1 minute a day. And if you can save as little as 10 minutes every day, you can get your 5 days holiday-trip… Every year. Now that starts to be really enticing, isn’t it? 😀

Here are 4 methods you can use to go on holidays while your peers are still at work 😉

1. Do Better Multitasking

Multitasking can be optimized.

I’ve written a whole article about it. Basically, you want to use different parts of your body without overwhelming yourself, and combine low-stakes activities of same nature together.

Check out these 4 rules for Optimal Multitasking here in more details.

2. Optimize Your Daily Routine

If something comes up repeatedly every day, AKA you have a routine, you might want to optimize that, too.

You can obviously do that temporally, by time needed, for instance by turning on the coffee machine first thing after waking up, so that after getting dressed your coffee is already waiting for you (and not the opposite 😉 ).

But you can also group actions locally (by location) :

  • When you are in the kitchen, do this, this and this.
  • When in the bathroom, do that and that.

You get the idea.

Personally, to open the ground floor shutters, I have to go to the front door first because the key to the shutters is on the keychain there. That is a significant amount of time lost every morning… Which I just fixed : I will leave the key next to the window now!

To get the most out of your time, I recommend you play on both aspects : temporal and local, and fine-tune them 🙂

3. Time’s Up !

Sometimes you want to dedicate a certain amount of time to a certain task, but no more because that would be a waste or this would end up being counterproductive.

This is especially true if you are a perfectionist like I am and you subconsciously “overdo” things.

For instance, I noticed that I spend a lot of time brushing my teeth, probably because deep inside I want them to be very clean… 😉

But overbrushing can damage the enamel.

The solution? Setting up a 2 minutes timer! That way you make sure you control your time.

4. The Touch it Once (TIO) Rule

In life we often cannot handle tasks the very moment they show up. When that happens we usually postpone the execution of said task. As a result we face the task twice : when it appears for the first time and when we effectively deal with it.

Obviously we have to think twice :

  • On the first time, about what pile we want to put the task on (important / not important / urgent / not urgent?)
  • On the second time, about how to actually fix the issue

Moreover, it is human to start thinking about the resolution of the problem on the first time, no matter how completely unnecessary and counterproductive it might be.

As you can see, having to face the same task twice results in a significant time loss, which multiplies for each little task we have to deal with during the course of a day.

Fortunately there is a solution : the Touch It Once! rule, which goes as follows :

If the task you have to deal with takes less than 2 minutes, deal with it immediately.

Indeed, postponing it will probably cost you more than 2 minutes altogether.. So better do it now!

That way, you can move throughout the day swiftly and efficiently. The TIO rule will also free you from unwanted mental clutter.

So to sum up, it’s easy to earn minutes every day, you just need to :

  1. Better your multitasking practice
  2. Optimize your routine temporally and locally
  3. Use timers
  4. Touch It Once

Soon enough these saved minutes will convert into a holiday for you, you will see… And when you do, make sure you call me from the Bahamas to let me know, I will be happy to hear get that call! 😉

What do you think, useful / not useful ? Is there another tip you want to share with the Time Master Freedom community ? Write a comment below and let’s talk!

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