How many times have you said, “I could do that if I had spare time?” Too many to count? I hear from people all the time that they would clear clutter or organize paperwork if they had spare time. Well, this year we get 24 extra hours — Leap Day 2012 is on Wednesday, February 29. We get this bonus time every four years but it’s like any other day. Should it be? Maybe we should honor it by doing something extra for enrichment. Food for thought.
Waiting for spare time to do things usually is unrealistic. In order to accomplish tasks, like organize a space or write a report, you must schedule time to do them. Things can be scheduled for a specific time or just sometime during the day.
Periodically we get Time Opportunities, as I call them. Time Opportunities can pop up unexpectedly. You planned to shop this afternoon to get clothes for your kids but your sister just offered hand-me-downs. Poof…a few hours of spare time! You can expect Time Opportunities during medical appointments. How long do you sit in the waiting room and again in the exam room? Instead of reading the practitioner’s material, bring your own.
Your friend texts to say he will be 15 minutes late for lunch. Poof…15 minutes of spare time! I refer to short Time Opportunities (about 5-15 minutes) as Small Pockets of Time. They are wonderful to accomplish quick tasks.
How can you use Small Pockets of Time? Here are 11 tips:
1. Return phone calls
2. Clear off your desk
3. Declutter a room
4. Pay some bills
5. Answer e-mails
6. Organize the junk drawer
7. Select your kids’ outfits for tomorrow
8. Empty the dishwasher
9. Write a to-do list
10. Chip away at your reading pile
11. Walk to get some exercise
Most people fail to recognize or fritter away Time Opportunities. Watch out for and use them — see how much more you can do!
Quote of the Month
I definitely am going to take a course on time management…just as soon as I can work it into my schedule. ~Louis Boone, poet and novelist