Double the Work, Double Your Time
Handling a full time day job and weekend hustle is like walking on 4-inch stilettos -beautiful but painful at the same time. Recently I get asked about how I manage both without losing my mind or stabbing someone’s throat (LOL). It’s still a work in progress for me. But I do hope these simple tips I learned can help you manage the most important commodity of your life -your TIME. 🙂
BREAK YOUR WEEK AND DAY INTO SEGMENTS
Mondays to Fridays from 8AM to 5PM will always be allotted for my day job and a few errands. But after-work hours and weekends are for my side projects, family time, and recreation. On a typical work day, I try my best to assign specific hours to work on priority tasks with meetings usually set in the morning. On weekends, I do most of my purchases on Sundays since traffic is much lighter with cheaper Grab and Uber rides, too. I get more things done with enough hours for rest or spend time with friends and family.
TAKE A BREAK BUT SET A SPECIFIC TIME OR DURATION
Break time is sacred for me. I bring my lunch to work daily so that saves me time. If you don’t bring your own meal, you will waste around 15-30 mins per day going down, choosing where to buy, lining up, etc. That’s 1.25 to 2.5 hours per week or 1 to 2 days per month! And when you do take a break, commit to it -zone out, read something you like, talk to friends, or just daydream. I’m a daydreamer; I can spend time alone, smoking in one corner or sipping my coffee while my mind floats away. Taking a real good break re-energizes your mind and gets you back to work fully focused.
CREATE A DAILY ROUTINE
List down your daily non-negotiable tasks and study yourself. If blow drying your hair and getting your makeup done before you leave will always be a must, try to time yourself but relax while doing it. Then adjust your schedule as you go. If you need to wake up 15 mins earlier to accommodate those personal steps, go ahead rather than cram and feel stressed first thing in the morning. Before leaving the house, always remember your PWKN = phone, wallet, keys, notebook. And also don’t forget to allot enough time for SLEEP daily as it helps keep your immune system in check. Sick days will push you back further so turn off that TV, put down your phone, and sleep on time.
SIMPLIFY. SIMPLIFY. SIMPLIFY.
I had to endure years of driving amid Manila’s daily hell traffic. So I made a life-changing decision to let go of my house and transfer nearer to my workplace. Now I only spend 10 to 15 mins one way. More time after work means more time for rest or side projects! I also tried to simplify my daily outfit. I choose neutral clothes with structured or easy silhouettes in black, white, and gray with only a few pops of color like blue and red. Working with this kind of style simplifies my daily outfit curation. All my clothes look put-together no matter how I mix and match. It relaxes my mind and it saves me time. I also use one kind of work bag for my daily use! Something durable, can carry my daily essentials, and looks great with whatever outfit I put on. My Mom even asked why I only carry one work bag for like 2 years until it gets super worn out. For me this system is simple and fuss-free. Lastly, simplify your daily email communication! I really try to make it a point that my daily emails are short, straightforward, yet complete. Lose the unnecessary, long-winding sentences or flowery words. I promise, it will save you a ton of time and colleagues will respond quicker.
This is my favorite part. When I’m faced with a task that’s not as fun, say for example a huge budget sheet or a long-winding report, I make a deal with myself for a reward. I’ll set my time limit to finish by say 7PM for overtime work. If I finish the task on time, I’ll get a bottle of wine with cheese, a good massage, or do my personal groceries after. If it’s a high pressure project like a launch or finishing a condo unit, I’ll reward myself with a new pair of shoes, a spa day, or even a trip. That way I’m focused on the goal and I make it more fun in the process. Well only I know this self-imposed deal so it’s kind of a weirdo system, haha. But it works! If I’m not satisfied with my output or I’m delayed, the money I’m supposed to spend for my reward goes straight to my piggy bank. (YES, I have a pink piggy bank.) You should try it, too. It really works. With this system, you will never lose.
MAKE TIME FOR THOSE THAT/WHO MATTER
Managing one’s time is not only about work or earning your extra income. I think success is felt when you can do the things you NEED to do, enjoy the things you WANT to do, and make time for those who MEAN A LOT to you.
Life, after all, is borrowed time… so make it count. 😉