Summer is sooo good! If you’re anything like me, you look forward to those sun-drenched days spent lounging next to the lake, paired with a good magazine, and a cold drink (ahhh). In my experience however, these blissful moments rarely happen on their own – they take a little planning ahead, and often you need to make time, in your otherwise busy life, simply to slow things down a notch!
After reading Laura Vanderkam’s What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, I decided I would share my favorite time management tips from her list of 50, so that you can make room for the summer-time joys that matter to you!
1 – The truth can be tough, but it sets us free. If you have time to watch TV, you have time to read. If you have time to watch TV, you have time to exercise. If you have time to watch TV, you have time to get reacquainted with whatever hobbies you ditched when you decided life was too busy. Rather than making excuses, be honest with yourself.
3 – Plan something fun every day. Life is better if you have a reason to get out of bed.
4 – Don’t overthink dinner. You can eat sandwiches, leftovers, a frozen pizza, eggs, or a quick salad. The point of a family dinner is to be together, not to be Julia Child. It doesn’t even have to be dinner! Family breakfast is a wonderful substitute for families with busy evenings.
9 – Realize you look great already. The difference between a forty-five minute personal-care routine and a thirty-minute one is more than an hour per workweek.
10 – Give things a home. Time spent hunting for shoes and phones is simply lost time.
11 – Own less stuff. Stuff consumes time – both in the income required to purchase it and in the hours spent caring for it and cleaning it up.
15 – Ask for help if you’re confused. It’s usually the quickest approach to solving a problem.
18 – Calling something “work” doesn’t make it important or necessary. Calculate the opportunity cost of all recurring meetings and other commitments. Any get-together should earn its place in your life.
22 – Practice saying no. When you don’t volunteer for something, that doesn’t mean that thing isn’t important. Indeed, it could be so important that you know you can’t give it the attention it deserves. Suggest someone who could.
25 – Celebrate victories. Yes, it’s a good time to open the nice bottle of champagne. What are you saving your energy – and the champagne – for?
30 – Unplug. Earth will not crash into the sun if society is starved of your input for a few hours. Set limits for yourself: no smartphone usage before 7:30a.m., for instance, or after 10:00 at night.
32 – If you find yourself unable to focus, take a break – a real one.
38 – Always offer to be the person initiating a call. That way it starts on time.
45 – Choose the bigger life. If that zip-line tour of the rain forest canopy sounds scary, remember that it will be over in an hour, and you can recount the story until you die of boring, natural causes.
49 – Embrace minitraditions. Not only does deciding to have pancakes every Thursday morning mean you don’t have to think about the meal, such rituals build stronger families as you develop special things you do together.