How To Free Up Two Hours In Your Day

How to spend less time on email, meetings, and more.

Josh Spector
Jan 18, 2019 · 7 min read

To free up two hours of your work day, all you have to do is free up 15 minutes of every hour.

The best way to do that is to look at the activities you spend most of your time doing and figure out how you can shave a little bit of time off of them.

via Flavio Amiel

Spend Less Time On Email

We spend more time on email than we realize because we dip in and out of it constantly throughout the day. All those little “adventures” add up.

• Unsubscribe from stuff you don’t care about.

Every email you get — even the ones you ignore —is a time suck.

• Use canned responses.

Chances are there are questions you get asked often or requests that come your way that require the same response every time.

• Send fewer emails.

The more emails you send, the more responses you get, and the more of your time you give away.

Only send emails when you absolutely have to — the best way to cut down on incoming email is to limit your outgoing email.

• Write short emails.

When you do send an email, the chances are you don’t need to send a long one.

via Samuel Zeller

Spend Less Time In Meetings

This just in: Most meetings are a colossal waste of time and the ones that aren’t are still likely twice as long as they need to be.

• Reduce the default time of your meetings by 15 minutes (at least).

You know why most meetings are scheduled for an hour?

The easiest way to save yourself 15 minutes (or more) is to reduce the scheduled time allotted for every meeting when it’s first scheduled.

You won’t lose anything by doing so — there’s nothing you will accomplish in a 60-minute meeting that you can’t accomplish in a 45-minute meeting.

• Always have an agenda.

A meeting without an agenda is a meeting destined to waste time.

• Limit recurring meetings.

Does your department really need to have a weekly meeting where everybody just shares an update of what they’re doing to prove their worth to the boss and everybody else?

• Start on time.

The first 10 minutes of just about every group meeting (and especially every conference call) tend to be spent with people waiting around for others to actually show up.

Start when the meeting’s scheduled to start and if people aren’t there, that’s their problem.

When you make a habit of starting on time, something magical happens: People start to show up on time.

• Try the Amazon memo tactic.

Meetings at Amazon often begin with the attendees silently reading a six-page memo that’s been prepared by the meeting organizer to give everybody context for the meeting and focus the discussion that follows not on just sharing information, but on actually moving things forward.

via rawpixel

Spend Less Time On Social Media

Whether you’re using it for business or pleasure, social media can be a huge time suck if you allow it to be.

• Stop using one (or more) social media platforms.

Every social channel you use for your business requires an additional time commitment to manage if you hope to get any actual benefit from it.

Ironically, one of the best things you can do for your social media strategy is to be on fewer platforms.

The fewer platforms you have to manage, the more time you’re able to focus on the ones you use, and the more likely you are to find success.

• Set a time limit for your social media use.

Time flies when you’re scrolling your feed.

via Jonny Lindner

Spend Less Time At Work

Your work day doesn’t actually start when you arrive at the office. It starts when you decide to go to work and ends when you decide to leave.

Those four minor adjustments will free up an HOUR of your day and have zero impact on the overall quality of your work.

Actually, I take that back. It will have an impact on the quality of your work — it will make it better.

For The Interested

Actionable ideas to help you produce, promote and profit from your creations.

Josh Spector

Written by

I run the For The Interested newsletter and help clients use social media and newsletters to grow and activate audiences.

For The Interested

Actionable ideas to help you produce, promote and profit from your creations.

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