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Published on December 29, 2021

Short on Time? 4 Time Hacks to Get Your Schedule Under Control

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Short on Time? 4 Time Hacks to Get Your Schedule Under Control

I’ve found that, over the years, traditional work schedules have gone by the wayside. Things like weekends off and nine-to-five workdays are a thing of the past. There are times that this flexibility is a blessing, but it does mean that I have to stay on top of both my work and personal schedule. Which is why I’ve started to incorporate more time hacks into my life.

Start introducing time hacks into your own life by first taking a closer look at your daily activities to determine how your time is spent. Consider using a daily activity log to evaluate your current schedule. With a few “off the beaten path” changes I’ve discovered, you too can get that stuffed schedule under control again.

Listed below are a series of time hacks I took to better organize my schedule. You may embrace them all or pick out a couple that resonate with you. Either way, you’ll gain more time in your schedule by incorporating a few of these time hacks into your daily routine.

1. Keep Up That Pandemic Simplicity

Let’s start with something that is easy to overlook: the pandemic brought a certain sense of simplicity to our lives. Don’t get me wrong. The event itself was a horrible thing. But as far as scheduling goes, for a lot of us, life got a bit cleaner.

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Social activity was at a minimum, and even things like shopping were done via drop-offs or curbside pickups. Over the course of life in quarantine, I’ve found that, whenever things lighten up, my reaction is to revert to old habits like in-person shopping and relentless social schedules. It’s a tendency that I’m resisting now.

See, it turns out that the simplicity induced by the pandemic is helpful for normal life, too. Work schedules are easier to manage without an added hour or two for commuting. Grocery shopping is a breeze with curbside pick up. I can even “eat out” at a moment’s notice by having Grubhub deliver my food or if I do not want to risk my health by going to a pharmacy and waiting for prescriptions, I can get my medication delivered to my doorstep with [1] same-day delivery via a company like Medly’s digital pharmacy.

I shared this tip with my grandparents, who are constantly refilling their prescriptions, so that they could stay safe as well. Pandemic or not, maintain those simple lifelines where you can. The time that they save is significant.

2. Create a Master Calendar

Calendars are awesome. They help me keep track of my daily schedule. I remember events that absolutely would have slipped off of my radar if they weren’t there, ensconced on my little calendar app. You can even set up calendar alerts or reminders to help keep you on schedule.

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I’ve gone with the mainstream option by utilizing Google’s popular multi-platform calendar. It integrates into so many devices and gadgets. But in reality, any calendar app can do. The point is, if you want your schedule to make any sense, you need a calendar.

But that’s not really a “time hack,” is it? If you want to take your act to the next level, you should go beyond a personal calendar. You need to integrate a “master calendar”[2] for your tribe. Whether that’s a spouse, children, or friends, if you cohabitate with others, get a calendar set up for you all to share. That way, you can include events that impact everyone involved in a central location for all to see.

3. Embrace the Rule of One

Multitasking feels great. But I have some tough love to share with you: that productive feeling is a fallacy. It’s actually more of a time suck rather than a time hack. In fact, one of the best ways to reduce your productivity is to take on too many things at once.

Enter the “Rule of One.”

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This is the uncomplicated idea that, in order to remain productive over the long term, you should plan to only accomplish one substantive thing each day. Start the day by picking a single significant thing that you want to check off your list by the end of the day.

By focusing on a single thing for each 24-hour period, you can maintain forward momentum. You can also embrace a genuine sense of productivity as you complete real-world items on a daily basis.

4. Review Your Entertainment …Regularly

When things are crazy, it’s easy to slide into unhealthy entertainment habits. When I finish a long day, all I want to do is binge on a comedy like “The Office” or “Modern Family.” These are great shows with real entertainment value, but when I mindlessly consume them as a bottomless escape from my reality, it doesn’t help matters much.

On the contrary, binging television, gaming at all hours of the night, going out to clubs, eating junk food, or any other entertainment activity can be destructive. The problem isn’t what you’re doing so much as why you’re doing it.

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If you want to restore your schedule, consider what you’re getting out of each entertainment activity. Use the Japanese model of simplicity and minimalism as an inspiration to remove time-sucking activities from your life — even technically “fun” ones.

If you’re like me, you’ll find that the entertainment you do continue to engage in has a new level of satisfaction. Oh, and you’ll free up more of your schedule, too.

Letting Go to Regain Control

If there’s one thing that I’ve discovered about scheduling over the years, it’s that a firmer grip never wins out. In fact, getting more intense about a crazy schedule tends to play out a bit like squeezing a bar of soap.

Instead, I’ve learned to look for subtle yet effective ways to make a difference. Incorporating things like simplicity, master calendars, and the Rule of One can have a huge impact on your schedule. It did for me.

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Featured photo credit: De an Sun via unsplash.com

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Kimberly Zhang

Kimberly Zhang is the Chief Editor of Under30CEO and has a passion for educating the next generation of leaders to be successful.

5 Ways to Limit the Stress of Working from Home Short on Time? 4 Time Hacks to Get Your Schedule Under Control Manifestation is a hot topic in this ever-growing personal-development-conscious world and culture we live in. Some people see manifestation as a woo woo, hyper-spiritual practice that focuses on bringing into your life that you energetically align with. Others view manifestation as a result of hard work and extreme action. Manifestation = the fruits of your labor. Still, many fall somewhere in between. Regardless of where you are on the spectrum, there are a few practical, actionable steps you can take in order to manifest anything you want. Keep on reading to learn how to do that. 5 Steps on How to Manifest Anything You Want Seek Clarity The first step in the manifestation process is seeking clarity. Whether you see it as a spiritual or actionable process, the core concept remains the same: you bring what you desire into your life. If you’re not clear on that, then how can you expect to manifest it? That would be like taking a road trip, hoping to end up in a specific destination, but refusing to define where it is. It doesn’t seem to make a whole lot of sense, does it? Well, if you’re hoping to manifest a specific outcome but don’t know what it is, how will you ever know if you’ve manifested it? By seeking clarity, you gain direction. You take the guesswork out of wondering if you have manifested your desire and provide a clear target. Furthermore, it allows you to eliminate distractions and focus your attention on the desired outcome. Your reticular activating system (RAS), a part of your brain that acts as a filter, will start to hone in on the information that is relevant to your goal and discard the information that is not. By being crystal clear on what you’d like to manifest, you’re letting your brain run in the background while you’re consciously putting in the work. Align With Your Goal It’s all good and well to sit down and create a list of the things you’d like to manifest. However, if you’re not aligned with the steps required to make it happen, your list essentially becomes a wishlist. If you truly want to understand how to manifest anything you want, you have to understand alignment. Alignment means ensuring that your morals, values, ethics, and energy are in line with your desired results. For example, if you would like to manifest a million dollars but think that money is the root of all evil, you are not in alignment with what you’d like to manifest. Similarly, let’s say that you want to have a better, healthier body. If you are not mentally and emotionally prepared to put in the amount of work and effort required to achieve your desired outcome, you won’t realize it. So, in order to manifest something in your life, you have to make sure that you are in alignment with your goals first. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself disappointed, lacking the motivation, or self-sabotaging in your pursuit. Hold the Belief One of the biggest mistakes I see when people are trying to manifest something in their lives is not holding a belief. Would they love to realize a dream? Absolutely! But do they actually believe that they can? Uh, no! That’s the problem. When you seek manifestation in life, you must believe that it is actually possible to happen. Now, to be clear, I am not saying that you should only attempt to manifest things that you are 100% certain you can do. Manifestation, just like goal achievement, is a process of growth. You should become a more evolved version of yourself in order to manifest what you desire. There should be a certain level of uncomfortability that exists when deciding on what you’d like to manifest. But you can still be confident in yourself to show up and do the necessary work to see your goals occur while also feeling a bit overwhelmed by its grandness. If you cannot believe in your abilities, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. Keep Your Vibration High and Clear Resistance So much of the process of manifestation — and goal setting, for that matter — is about your mindset and perseverance. Notice what I said there: “the process of manifestation.” Many people forget that manifestation is a process, and a time-consuming one at that. In this society we live in, a lot of people fall victim to believing that things should come easily or instantly. However, because manifestation requires growth and development, it definitely doesn't come easy or happen instantaneously. It can take time and effort to manifest your greatest desires, so it is essential to keep your vibration high. Below are a few tips to guarantee the latter: Optimize your environment for the mood and emotions you want to feel; Eliminate or distance yourself from people who lower your vibration or put you in a negative state; Meditate; Exercise; Make time for activities that bring you joy and happiness; and Get plenty of sleep. By doing some or all these things, you’ll find it so much easier to maintain a high vibration. Moreover, resistance can either be internal or external. The tips above are crucial in getting rid of resistance that block you from moving forward or cause you to quit, namely limiting stories, physical exhaustion, negative people, etc. But regardless of where it is coming from, you need to break through the resistance in order to manifest your greatest desires. Track Your Progress and Celebrate Another good way to keep your vibration high and persevere throughout the manifestation process is by tracking and celebrating your progress. Often, we get laser-focused on the result and adopt an all-or-nothing mentality when we’re pursuing a goal or attempting to manifest something in our lives. The problem with that is the fact that you won’t know if you’re making progress and may get discouraged if you do otherwise. After all, manifestation may take some time. Think about any racing video game, for instance. As far as I can remember, every game I ever played didn’t just put you on the track and tell you to complete a certain number of laps. No, there were checkpoints along the way. These little markers allowed you to know that you were on pace to achieving your goal of finishing the race. Each time you made it to another checkpoint, you knew you were still in the race. It works the same way in real life. While you’re holding the belief that you will follow through and manifest you desires, you can also help yourself mentally, emotionally, and spiritually by setting up some checkpoints in the process. These checkpoints will remind you that you are still on track to manifesting what you want. And once you hit every checkpoint, make sure you celebrate! As high achievers, we often celebrate one milestone by immediately moving on to the next. This is dangerous because you slowly turn off the dopamine response in your brain that’s signaled when you achieve your goals if you don’t celebrate. When this happens, you fall into that vicious cycle of enough never being enough. So, be sure to celebrate hitting those checkpoints once you establish them. Conclusion To review, the first step in the manifestation process is being clear on what you want to manifest. This will give you peace of mind and allow your RAS to work for you. After gaining clarity, check in with yourself to make sure that you are actually in alignment with what you’d like to manifest. If you’re not, seeing it take place in real life will feel like an uphill battle. The next step is to hold belief. In order to manifest something in your life, you have to believe that you can do it. Be honest with yourself and ask whether you truly believe you can manifest what you are talking about. Keep your vibration high and clear resistance, too — that’s the next step in understanding how to manifest what you want in your life. Manifestation is a process that can take time and effort. If you don’t protect your vibration and clear resistance along the way, it’ll be a tough ask of yourself. Lastly, in order to manifest anything you want, track your progress by setting up checkpoints and then celebrate it afterwards. That is how you can manifest anything you want. How to Manifest Anything You Want and Achieve Your Dreams How to Start a Side Hustle While Keeping Your Full-Time Job 30 Good Morning Motivation Quotes To Kickstart Your Day

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Last Updated on January 27, 2022

5 Unexpected Places to Boost Your Productivity

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5 Unexpected Places to Boost Your Productivity

The environment of a typical office or a quiet library may sometimes lessen your productivity as the unchanging views fail to stimulate your senses and keep your brain running. If you are the kind that dislikes absolute silence or minimal noise when working, these unexpected places to work may boost your productivity level!

1. Coffee shops

Research has shown that an adequate amount of ambient noise stimulates your senses and keeps you alert. Where else better to find some chatter and clatter to boost your creative juices? Working in the coffee shop also guarantees something else: unlimited supplies of caffeine!

Caffeine wakes you up by fooling adenosine receptors and speeds transmitting activities up in your nerve cells.If you do decide to try this place out, make sure that your work computer is facing the coffee shop customers so you will be less likely to procrastinate or go to inappropriate sites because people are secretly watching you.

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If your workplace requires you to be in the office, try this website and/or phone app that provides you with sounds from coffee shops around the world. Want to work at a cafe in Paris? No problem, it’s just a button away.

2. Cafeterias

Similar to coffee shops, company cafeteria or food courts provide consistent noise and the smell of food. The aroma of food makes you look forward to your next break and should motivate you to complete your work.

The act of eating likewise keeps your brain alert and produces dopamine. But make sure only to snack and stay around 60% full so that each bite is rewarding and invigorating. Snacking every 90 minutes should keep your brain balanced enough to focus on the work at hand.

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3. Empty University Classrooms  

Whether or not you’re an university student, we have all been a student at some point in our lives. And when you’re in a classroom, your brain is primed to stay focused because you have been conditioned to concentrate in class. In comparison to your bedroom, where your brain is primed to relax, sleep and have fun, the environment of the classroom triggers your memory to stay alert (unless you never listened in class) and work.

If you do decide to try working in an empty university classroom, be sure to bring a studious friend. Once you see that your friend or coworker is working hard, you would feel guilty for procrastinate and be more competitive.

Ever heard of environmental context-dependent memory? Research has shown that environmental context influences the way we encode information. If you study in the same place you first learned the material, your chances of recalling the information are significantly increased. Use environmental cues to your advantage so you spend less time doing more work!

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4. Outdoors

Fresh air, sunlight, cool breeze. Talk about getting your vitamin Ds the natural way. A healthy body is crucial to being productive. If you have a porch, use it to maximize your productivity!

On a cool day, the crisp air is good for waking your brain up. If your work station is indoors and poorly ventilated, the build up of carbon dioxide will cause your brain to be less active, hence, less productive. Try to bring some work to a park nearby or an unsheltered town square where you are exposed to the sun. Fresh air will vitalize your brain and the warm sunlight will bring a smile to your face.

5. The Shower 

Many people experience their “Aha!” moments when they’re in the shower. Why is that? The hot water helps with circulation and improves blood flow to your brain, giving it more oxygen and nourishment to break down your work block.

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If you aren’t motivated to work or feeling bored, a good shower will not only open up your pores, but also give your brain a boost of energy. Keep a waterproof white board and markers in the washroom so you will never lose those wonderful ideas again!

Featured photo credit: Thomas Franke via unsplash.com

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