Monday, September 5, 2011

Take advantage of your house servants

I've talked in the past about the efficiency strategy of touching things once. Another way I boost my productivity is to think about how to make use of time most effectively by utilizing technology. Now I'm not advocating going out and purchasing a bunch of new items. What I am suggesting is making use of what you currently own to its utmost. It's like hiring a bunch of household help for free! Here are some examples of using technology to save time:

I start the washing machine before unloading the dishwasher (or other task) so that it can be working while I am working.

One of my favorite things is the timer on my washing machine. I own an LG washer that has a "delay start" feature. When you are shopping for a new washer, look for this feature. I prize it above all other features. It means you can load the washing machine before you go to bed and have it start at 5:00 a.m. so that your freshly washed clothing is ready to go into the dryer when you awake. Your servant has worked while you slept. 

I make good use of my crock pot. It can work while I do other things (including sleeping - see the theme here?).

I love my bread maker. It is working away making fresh bread while I go about my other work. It can even work while I am away from home. I also utilize it to make gifts. That's right! There isn't a better gift than a loaf of fresh bread!

Fold your clothes while they are still warm in the dryer. Take advantage of the fact that they are wrinkle free. More laundry tips here.

Make good use of your electronic calendar either on your phone, computer or other device. Use the alarm feature to remind you of appointments and birthdays. I have a Palm which does the job just fine. It isn't the latest gadget (I bought it used on Ebay), but I use it to its fullest. Don't forget to back it up because if it gets lost, so are you.

I love, love, love the shopping list software called SplashShopper. You can download it to your portable device (iPhone, Android, Blackberry, iPad...) or computer. I use it to make my grocery list and keep track of the latest prices. It is an inexpensive program I use every day. It also comes with a travel list to help me remember what to pack.

Take a shower at night and let your hair dry overnight. Now, this isn't making use of technology, but it still is a good time saver strategy (and keeps your sheets cleaner). All you curly headed girls will disagree here!

I'm sure there are many more tips, but these are my top few. How do you use technology to make life easier for you?

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