It seems that everyone is busy these days. Mums, dads, and even kids have their schedules packed! We need all the help we can get navigating our busy lives, which is why I’ve put together this list of time-saving hacks for busy dads. It’s nothing game-changing, only a few small things that I’ve noticed are making a difference. Things that have helped me clear my head, as well as my schedule, so I can have more time to spend with my family.
Do Away with to Do Lists
I’ve been a fan of to-do lists all my life. It’s great to have all your tasks laid out in front of you. Not to mention the satisfaction you feel when you get to tick one off! But in time, I’ve noted that they only add more time to my already busy schedule and they also, at times, are cause for frustration and feelings of failure. Whenever I wouldn’t complete a task, it would frustrate me to no end and it would weigh heavy on my shoulders. Even if the task wasn’t that important. Also in a list of 15 things to do, you will naturally gravitate towards those that take up less time and leave the “bigger” tasks last. There is also such as thing called the tyranny of choice, that proved that an abundance of choice often causes misery. Which is why I found that updating my calendar, or simply making a mental list of the most important tasks of the day, is much more helpful.
Sign Up to a Laundry Service
Doing the laundry is probably one of the most adult tasks there are. There’s little to no pleasure to be gained from doing the laundry and if someone could come and take the dirty clothes off my hands and bring them over to me clean, that would get me a little closer to my own personal heaven. But wait, that kind of stuff exists! A laundry service that picks up, washes and delivers your laundry will give back to you some of your precious time to use as you see fit. You’ll wonder how you ever lived without it!
Another great way to save time when you don’t really have all that much to begin with is to covert some of the family favourite recipes to one-pot recipes. Let’s say that your family love Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca, but you don’t have time to lightly brown the onions and add each ingredient at a time. Well then adapt it! Find a one-pot recipe that looks the most appealing and you’re good to go. A slow cooker will also help achieve delicious results with little preparation time.
Packing cubes are great for travel, especially if you haven’t got too much time on your hands. These cubes will help you compartmentalize your suitcase so that everything is easy to access. When I’m travelling for a couple of days, I prefer to use a cube for pants and socks, one for shirts and t-shirts, and one for jeans and trousers. And your little ones will want to imitate you, which is always nice, as it’s good to get some organizational skills into them at a young age.
Do Away with Multitasking
While multitasking may seem like a great idea for a busy person like yourself, it’s actually been proven, again and again, that it simply doesn’t work as well as it is supposed to. Sure, you can watch the news, do a bit of work on your laptop and also have a conversation with your kid. But are you really doing any of these? According to some studies, it appears that only 2.5% of people are able to do this multitasking thing successfully. If you think you’re one of them, kudos to you, but most likely you’re not and you’re just fooling yourself. Instead, I would suggest practising mindfulness.
Mindfulness is having a bit of a moment right now, and for good reasons. Its goal is to bring one’s attention to the experiences that are happing at the present moment and its benefits are many. You’ll feel the results almost immediately!
Streamline Your Morning Routine
Mornings are almost always hectic when you have little ones on your hands. Whether it’s cooking breakfast, cleaning up, asking if they’ve brushed their teeth or done their homework, and then checking said teeth and homework, mornings are not peaceful or calm. Which is why I think that streamlining your morning routine can help save you some time, and make some sense of what’s happening. Maybe read the morning news in the subway, instead of at breakfast. Or don’t stay in line for your coffee, make it at home. Analyze your morning routine carefully and you will know what can go and what should stay.
Meal prep is something that will save you time, help you and your family eat right, and also introduce your child to cooking. You could prep for breakfast and dinner but I suggest you start with dinner. Make a list of foods you and your family would like to eat in the evening and then start prepping. Do the shopping, chopping, cutting and freezing and then when the time comes, you’ll only spend about 10 minutes on dinner. There are countless videos on YouTube on the subject of meal preps and those would be a great place to start. Have fun!
If you’ve got any time-saving hacks that you’d like to share with me and my readers, drop a line in the comment section below!