Estimated Reading Time | 8 Minutes
My feet don’t touch the ground. I’m stressed. Works mental. I’ve got to balance kids and a real-life job and a relationship and seeing family and a mortgage and paying bills. I need to create more time to see my friends and workout and explore my passions and remember who I am because at the moment I feel life’s constantly one big rush.
So you want to know how to create more time for yourself and be more productive?
Using the following time hacks has allowed me to save up to five hours a day. They also provide me with more energy enabling me to be highly productive.
1. Make Your Commute The Time To Learn | Time saved: 40 minutes
Dread the daily commute? If you want to create more time in your thirties then put your commute to good use. This time is golden.
2. Standing Desks | Time saved: 48 minutes
Work can be a huge stress. Sometimes you wonder how to find time to do everything.
Here’s the solution:
Workers at the Draugiem Group conducted on their worker productivity when using standing desks and found an average increase of 10 percent. Another reported a productivity increase of a huge 50 percent.
With cutting-edge businesses such as employing standing desks into their offices, it shows more and more companies are using standing desks as a way to create more time in the workplace. If you work eight hours a day (even going with the more conservative estimate of 10 percent time savings) that’s a total of 48 minutes saved everyday.
3. Check Your Emails Only Three Times A Day | Increased general productivity
Research in the journal has found checking your emails less frequently reduces stress. Another by the University of British Columbia Morning suggests checking your email three times a day for better well-being.
Checking your emails three times a day can reduce stress and increases productivity as you’re not distracted by new tasks.
4. Make Positive Habits | Increased general productivity
Consistency is key to success. For example, I try and make a habit of learning Korean for 30 minutes everyday. However, it’s not always easy to stay motivated.
Fortunately, free apps like allow me to set goals, customize my own action plan and record my progress and success. Your chances of achieving your goals increases if you use apps due to what is known as the ‘endowment effect’. This highlights that taking ownership of your goals means you’re more likely to fulfil them.
5. Sleep Less But Feel More Refreshed | Time saved: 1 hour
You may be worried how to find time to do everything.
Here’s an efficient way to create more time. In fact, you can add an hour to your day by sleeping less but actually feeling more refreshed in the morning.
According to sleep expert, Dr Neil Stanley, everyone needing eight hours sleep a night is a myth. We are all individual and it’s actually genetically determined. [Check out my interview with Dr Stanley, ‘Get Better Sleep’]
Anywhere between four and eleven hours can be considered normal.
Dr Stanley states experimenting is key.
You need to change your sleep patterns slowly to get better sleep. So if you’re trying to shorten your sleep then decreasing it by 15 minutes a week is the speed you want to be thinking about to find that sweet spot.
However, to find that sweet spot you must find a time that allows you to feel awake and refreshed by around 11/12pm.
It’s a trial and error process. If you work a normal daytime shift, at around 11/12 o’clock in the morning you should feel awake, focused and alert. If you feel like you could put your head down on your desk and have 40 winks you probably haven’t had enough sleep.
6. Cold Showers | Time saved: 5 minutes
I’ve personally seen huge gains from taking daily cold showers.
Cold showers boost your immune system, increase your mood, wake you up and help you get shredded. An extra benefit is you won’t want to stay in the shower for long at all, saving yourself at least 5 minutes a day. It all adds up. Try taking the 30Figured 30 Day Cold Shower Challenge if you’ve got the balls.
7. Cut Down On Social Media | Time saved: 1 hour
Want to know how to get more out of your day?
Social media is simply a black hole, swallowing your productivity faster than the speed of light (a slightly hyperbole metaphor there, but I’m gonna go with it).
According to a study by Social Media Today, the average person spends nearly two hours a day on social media.
Imagine if somebody blessed you with an extra two hours — the magic you could conjure. Do the following to cut down on social media and create more time:
- Set up a specific time allowance and be rigid with it.
- If you want to track how long you spend on social media, use apps such as
- Alternatively, hardcore it and use , allowing you to completely blocks the sites you waste the most time on for selected time periods
- Turn off notifications. If it’s really pressing, they’ll inbox you or email you.
8. Give Up Reading Tabloid Newspapers | Time saved: 20 minutes
ISIS, the Gaza Strip, Ebola, school shootings, killer cops and highly volatile word leaders — it seems that the world is becoming a more and more dangerous place. However, if you ignore news outlets and look at the statistics, according to Oxford University’s , our world is safer than it’s ever been.
What this means is newspapers aren’t telling a true story, but rather a sensational narrative to drum up sales.
Here’s how to have more time to yourself doing things that are going to help you improve your life. Put down the paper, start engaging in positive and useful content, become happier and save yourself 20 minutes a day.
9. Shop Online For Groceries | Time saved: 13 minutes (Daily average considering 90 minutes saved per week)
Go online and get your groceries delivered straight to your door to create more time. You can save and edit your shopping list, so ordering weekly is literally just a click of a button rather than an hour-and-a-half trawl around some crazy mega mart.
10. Hit The Gym Just Once A Week | Time saved: 17 minutes (Daily average considering 120 minutes saved per week)
Studies have shown you can still build a strong and ripped physique without spending much time in the gym providing you eat well and get good quality sleep. Note: It won’t be as effective (as long as you don’t overtrain, the more exercise the better) but for people who still want to squeeze in a workout to stay on top of their fitness and avoid the dredded beer gut this is a good option.
11. Meditate | Increased general productivity
There’s an old zen proverb that goes:
“You should sit in meditation for 20 minutes every day, unless you’re too busy; then you should sit for an hour.”
While meditation may take 20 minutes out of your schedule a day, science shows it reduces stress, eliminates distracting thoughts and increases productivity. It can even boost your gym gains (see ‘How Arnold Schwarzengger Used Meditation To Build Muscle.’
12. Going Out With Kids Checklists | Increased general productivity
Going out with a baby or small children can seem like a military operation. Here’s a tip from former commando and parenting expert, Neil Sinclair:
“If you have a baby, increase productivity by creating laminated checklists according to the general place and duration you are going so you don’t forget anything.”
13. Chores For Pocket Money | Time saved: 10 minutes
Know how to get more out of your day. Getting your kids to help out with daily tasks in exchange for pocket money. This will teach them about work ethic, responsibility and budgeting and enable you to create more time.
14. Dishwasher To Table | Time Saved: 5 minutes
Here’s a clever hack to create more time in the mornings. Unload the plates and glasses from the dishwasher straight to the table the night before, ready for breakfast.
This not only eliminates unnecessarily placing them back into the cupboards, but also preps you for breakfast the following day so you can get off to a speedy start.
Total Time Saved: 4 hours 38 minutes | Also add on any increases in general productivity
Guys. Let’s help each other become fitter, happier and more fulfilled in our thirties. If you have any of your own productivity hacks you’d like to share feel free to leave them in the comments section below.