Oh, the morning dance. It’s the same thing every day, isn’t it? Find your keys, find your bus pass, find your cell phone… Have you ever thought about how much time you spend searching for the things you use every day?
I used to spend so much time–up to ten minutes a day–hunting those things down. That’s about an hour every week! Then I thought about how much time that was, and all the other things I could accomplish, and I started keeping everything in the same place every day. I call the little ledge by the backdoor my “landing strip”. When I get home, I always put my keys, sunglasses, business cards, and bus pass there. Basically anything that’s in my pockets that might get missed the next day.
To inspire you to give it a try, here’s what you can do with an extra hour every week:
- I love self-care: give yourself a manicure &/or pedicure. Take a long, hot bath with a magazine & champagne. Do a BSE. Give yourself a facial. Trim your bangs. Even pluck your eyebrows
- Snuggle down & take a sweet little nap. Or, if you’re feeling more energetic than that, take a long walk. Bring your camera & practice taking photos.
- Try making a list of things you have & don’t use–it will come in handy when you’re feeling like you want to go and spend some money because you’re bored!
- Another great list to make is everything you like about yourself & your body. Put it somewhere you’ll see it every day. Mine’s at the front of my Filofax.
- Fantasy shopping! Add things to your Etsy or Amazon wishlists, build outfits in Polyvore, or pin some inspiration on Pinterest.
- Find some new podcasts to listen to. Take a trip to the library. Or, if you’re a television watcher, an episode or two of your favourite television show.
- If you’re like me & you always have a million ideas pinging around in your head, find a great notebook to carry with you to write them all down in.
- Are you a self-help reader? A lot of self-help books have exercises you can try, why not read & implement one thing from a self-help book?
- Spend some time writing a journal entry, if you’re a journaller.
- Grab a glue stick & a big piece of bristol board, or some tacks & a bulletin board, & give yourself some inspiration. Make a theme–spring fashion inspiration, dream travel destinations, beautiful decor. Put it somewhere you can see it.
- Pick up a craft you’ve been ignoring & do some work on it. I’ve had a pair of knitted socks on the go for literally years! Or tackle a few things from your mending pile. Bonus points for listening to records.
- There is so much you can clean up in an hour! Pick one area of your house & tidy it up. Tackle your inbox (inbox 0 is such a great feeling). Get at your makeup kit & throw away everything that smells funny, is clumpy, or is just the wrong colour. Take a spin through your filing cabinet & get rid of outdated documents you know longer need–or start a filing system if you don’t already have one. Tidy up your desk, get rid of those receipts that you don’t need, & throw away pens that don’t work. Catalogue your old photographs. Sort out your socks & underwear drawer(s)–I desperately need to do this. Clean out your kitchen cupboard & get rid of things you know are terrible for your body.
- Take care of your financial situation: go over your budget & bills & look for cutbacks (more shoe money!). Try switching to a no-fee bank account. Organize your debts & develop a plan to tackle them. Create a visual reminder of your debts – for every $x that you owe, put a brick, a rock, a beanbag somewhere prominent… Something you can get rid of every time you pay that amount off.
- Get some food planning done: plan your grocery list & meals for the week. Make a quadruple batch of something to freeze for your lunches.
- Find & catalogue free events in your town–get a list ready for your next date night.
- Turn off your cell phone, shut your laptop, turn off the television, & spend an hour with your love, looking at each other, drinking tea & talking. Or build a little fort to snuggle in. Gaze longingly at one another.
- Touch base with people you haven’t talked to in a while–call them up, chat on Skype (or FaceTime!), or write them a long e-mail or letter.
- Volunteer your extra time. There are so many great organizations that need helping hands out there. Find a cause you believe in & give of yourself.
You have every reason to give yourself the gift of time. Take a step today to make it happen.