When you're trying to juggle a business, blog, and busy life, finding ways to save time can become a priority. So here are thirteen tips for making the most out of the time you do have.
Prioritise by Urgency
Most of our to-do lists are jammed up with non-essential tasks that shift our attention away from the more urgent duties. By writing everything down and eliminating the non-essential tasks we can prioritise our workload based on importance and urgency.
“Eat the Frog"
Whenever there is something we really don’t want to do on our to-do list, the tendency is to ignore it, push it further down the list, or worse still, do every other task much slower just to avoid getting to it. Instead, we need to “eat the frog,” get the worst task over and down with, and everything after that will feel much easier.
Create an Editorial Calendar
Scheduling content and tasks into an editorial calendar is a huge time saver that allows us to focus on producing content more efficiently. There are so many reasons why an editorial calendar is useful; not only can creating an editorial calendar help us remain focused on specific tasks, it upholds our momentum and consistency.
Break Down and Bulk Tasks
Breaking down the workload into a step-by-step process can make even the most challenging of tasks less daunting and allows us to see what can be bulked together. Batch process tasks such as photographs, writing up content, and making products to save on time.
If we find ourselves creating the same graphic, layout, or formatting over and over, the easier way to save time is to save a basic template. Saving basic templates for emails, graphics, or formats we use regularly makes us more efficient when carrying out these tasks in the future.
Efficiency is as much about planning as it is about doing the work. Once we're focused on the most urgent tasks, we should set ourselves a realistic deadline to help us keep on track and on top of our workload.
With websites and apps like IFTTT, Buffer, and Hootsuite, we no longer need to do everything manually ourselves. Utilising automation by scheduling posts helps us keep things ticking over while we’re busy doing something else.
Schedule Time for Email and Social Media
Instead of having email and social media browser tabs open, close them down and schedule specific times to check them. Having these tabs permanently open makes it tempting to keep flipping back, not having the temptation there helps maintain our focus.
Turn Off Notifications
Instant notifications whether it’s emails, text messages, phone calls or social media, are utter distractions, which are unnecessary and disruptive to work. Turning them off at the source makes it easier to concentrate and we're more likely to forget about them altogether.
Keep Replies Short
When it comes to online conversations, we can save a ton of time by remembering to give short and concise responses that get directly to the point of any questions or enquiries we may receive. Ditch long replies and get straight to the point.
Use Canned Responses
Obviously there are certain emails that require a personal touch but as a freelancer, we receive a lot of enquiries that require a generic answer. Setting up canned responses to answer commonly asked questions can save a heap of time. Boomerang is a good service to use if you want to write-up emails in bulk and schedule them to send at a more appropriate time.
Bulking together tasks such as photography and writing to save time is one thing, but trying to multi-task is a recipe for disaster. Focusing on one task at a time is more efficient and productive, and helps us get through that mammoth to-do list much quicker.
Optimise the Workspace
A disorganised workspace can wreak havoc with our precious time. Making sure our workspace suits the way we work can have a drastic effect on productivity. Create a workspace that not only inspires you but helps you stay productive and time efficient by optimising the layout, creating zones, and keeping everything in sync.