Mom and daughter at unset visiting a rock pool

Tips from a working mom – 11 ways to save time

As a working mom I juggle a lot of different aspects that makes up my colourful life – running my businesses, looking after my daughter, house keeping, the shopping, the pets, the list always seems endless. The one thing every single one of us can do with more of is ever illusive time.. so I thought I would put down a few of the ways that I save time and maybe some of these ideas will be useful to you..

1. Consolidation 

This is a massive for me .. I take this to the extreme.. i consolidate everything that you can possibly imagine. Even small things like, if I am making my daughter’s lunch box and I need some thing from the fridge I will get everything that I think of that I am going to need out of the fridge at the same time because walking back and forth from the fridge takes, you guess it, time. 

When I go to the supermarket I do a big shop, I know that some times cash flow won’t allow for this but as big as you can because there is nothing more time consuming than walking around the supermarket every 3rd day.  

If I need to make payments on internet banking I get a few together before I sit down and do them.. I think you are getting the idea.. 

I also consolidate things that need doing when outside of the house, for example I walk the dogs at the park on the way back from dropping my daughter at school and if I haven’t seen a family member or friend for a while I try get them to join me so that I see them, get exercise and walk the dogs all in one go.  

2. Lists Lists Lists 

The necessity of lists cannot be over emphasised. It’s the lists that often help me see where and what can be consolidated and help me plan my week, if I don’t have my list then I often end up going around in circles and wasting a lot of time.

3. Clothes 

So having been in the fashion and clothing business for most of my adult life I have worked with a lot of people to help them put their wardrobes together and this is some thing that I often advise. Buy things that you love but try to choose things that work together so that you don’t have that one pair of pants that needs that one top and it happens to be in the wash or need ironing. The other thing I always advise  is to make sure that you include a few dresses in your wardrobe that are what I call, “throw on and gos”.  These are items that you don’t have to think about, they look good, fit well and you can just grab it, pop it on and you are out the door.   Standing trying on clothes, deliberating, trying to find the one top pant that works with the one top can put you on the back foot for the whole day. 

4. Cook more than you need 

Whenever possible, I make extra and freeze the left overs so that on one day the next week I can just defrost and warm it up.  Spaghetti bolognese is a great example of this.. I freeze the sauce and then defrost and make the pasta fresh each time. I am queen of 15 minute kid friendly healthy meals but that’s a blog for another time.  I try and always keep at least one prepared meal “in my back pocket” for days that I am really tired or we get home late.  

5. Use your travel time

If you can find a way to work from home do it, that saves a massive amount of time and has numerous benefits.   But if you have to go to work then use your travel time to get anything that can be done done.. if you drive get a hands free kit and use the time to make phone calls that need making.  If you are on public transport then it’s easier, you can whatsap, reply to emails, listen to inspirational podcasts… so many things that you can do with that time rather than just sitting on social media.  

6. Keep things in the same place

Have a specific place for everything.. my dad taught me this.. he had a pair of scissors that he always used to say to me were made of rubber so that they bounced back.. having a set place for things saves time when looking for them. Think how often you spend time looking for the keys, your sunglasses, your wallet.. have a set place for them and just get into the habit thats where they are kept, always. 

7. Share the load

In the Harvard Grant Study (the longest running study of adult development) they found that children who did house chores were more likely to become successful adults.  So when you get your child involved in sharing the house work load not only are you saving time (many hands make light work) but it’s highly probable that you are also helping them become more successful adults.  There is also the additional bonus of it possibly improving your relationship with your child. In my experience mother’s can often become bitter and resentful if they are carrying the full load of house work etc while their child sits and on their device, and so the sharing of the house work chores can actually be a bonding experience. 

8. Limit screen time

Spending time on social media, watching tv shows or playing games online can really eat into your day.  Become aware of how much time you are spending and if it’s a lot then limit it to when you are standing in queues or when you need to unwind.   

9. Get a bigger rubbish bin

If you have a small rubbish bin you may find that you are constantly taking out the trash, get yourself a bigger bin and reduce the frequency and save time. 

10. Use a short cycle on washing 

So my washing machine has 3 settings ranging between 2 hours and 39 minutes.  Our clothes are rarely that dirty that they require washing for 2 hours so I jump between the 2 shorter setting most of the time and I get through the washing alot quicker.  The added bonuses are that I use less electricity and water.  

11. Use the tumble dryer instead of ironing

This ia a bit embarrassing to admit but I only iron things that absolutely need ironing and then I often tumble dry those items and get them out the tumble dryer while they are still hot so that they don’t crease.. this lessens the need for ironing, one of my absolute worst chores. 

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. If you have any other ways that you save time please share in comments so that we can all learn and help one another.  I am new to blogging and so would appreciate it, if you found this useful, if you would please share it with other kindred spirits and please check out my other blogs on my website https://leannelogan.com/posts Thank you. 

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