Organize Time

by Jeffrey Strain


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Dave had one of those grins on his face that you knew something was up.

"What happened?" I asked

"My wife and I got in a fight last week," he responded.

"I don't think that is something that you should be smiling about," I reminded him.

"I solved the problem," he responded, smiling a little more broadly.

"Do you care to elaborate?" I asked.

"Sure. About 6 months ago, I bought an expensive exercise bike for my wife because she had been insisting that she needed it to keep in shape. After using it a total of two times, it ended up in our back room not to be touched again. Last night as she was watching TV, I mentioned this fact to her. She explained that she just didn't have the time in her busy schedule to exercise. I solved the problem for her," he said, breaking into a grin again.

"Do I want to know how you solved the problem?" I asked

"I hooked up the exercise bike to the TV. Now the only way she can watch TV is if she pedals the bike hard enough to generate power to watch it!"

This story always comes to mind when I hear that people "don't have enough time" to do everything that needs to be done. While it's an extreme example, it clearly illustrates that with a little thought, more than one thing can been completed at the same time in many cases.

Time is a limited commodity. We each have 168 hours per week to spend and that can't be expanded. If you want to improve your financial situation, becoming more efficient in using this time is essential. The good news is there are a lot of things that you're probably doing now individually that you can double up by doing them while doing something else.

Take the example of the TV. There are a wide variety of things you can do while watching TV or during the commercial breaks. If you know that you are going to watch a certain TV show, take a minute to prepare and have something to do at the same time:

- Fold laundry
- Knit
- Polish silver
- Exercise/Stretch
- Organize photos
- Clip and organize coupons

If it usually takes you 20 minutes to fold the laundry, but you can complete it while watching your favorite afternoon soap opera, that frees up 20 minutes to do something else.

Another good example of where doubling up can be done is while talking with friends on the phone. If you have a portable phone, there are a large number of things you can do around the house at the same time as talking on the phone.

- Rinse and load the dishwasher
- Unload and put away the dishes
- Sweep the kitchen floor
- Wipe down kitchen counter tops
- Wash a load of laundry
- Hang clothes to dry
- Pick up around the house
- Iron

Even if you don't have a portable phone, you can prepare ahead of time and have something placed by your land line phone to do when friends call.

These are just a few examples of things you can do at the same time to free up more time. There are many more if you give it a little thought. By learning to double up where possible, you'll free up extra time to do those things that you thought you just didn't have the time to do.


Jeffrey Strain is owner of savingadvice.com - a website dedicated to helping you save money through quality articles and tips. Copyright (c) Jeffrey Strain.

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