Maximizing productivity: Financial and personal
A great way to really kick your savings into gear is to work on your levels of productivity. When you’re productive, you’re efficiently using your time in an organized fashion – this is practically a recipe for savings. We all know the old adage, time is money, and if it’s true (and indeed it seems to be), then we should all be working a little harder at maximizing our productive use of that time.
This article is going to walk you through how being productive helps, and how to be more productive in your financial and personal life.
How productivity saves you money- a Case study with electricity
Let’s look at a simple goal, reducing your electricity bill. If you’re aiming to reduce your electricity bill, you can run around like a crazy person turning off all of the lights in your house, trying to avoid electricity. But on top of being impractical, this kind of operation is not productive.
A more productive way to reduce your electricity bill would be to take the time to understand peak hours of day, and to only wash clothes, take showers, and so on outside of that peak time, thereby reducing the bill without being impractical. This is just one case study of how productivity can pay off, let’s look at other tips to maximize productivity.
When you want to do something, you need to be focused on that task to really get it done right. Multitasking may sound appealing, but often winds up stretching yourself too thin and only half doing jobs that needed your full attention.
If you want to apply this thinking to your money, examine how you spend and target specific expenses to lower one by one. You’ll end up with significantly lower bills, and you will be able to rest assured knowing they are the lowest they can be because they were targeted while you were focused.
Automating bills is a fantastic way to both avoid late fees and free up the time it would take to manually pay them, a perfect exercise in the art of maximizing productive use of both time and money. Most organizations allow automation of bill paying, so set your expenses up today.
Create an expense calendar
Use a free application like Google Calendars if you want to have a clear and easy way to see when your expenses are coming up, and how much the amounts are. You can even set up recurring expenses, so you don’t have to work so hard every month creating the entire calendar all over again.
Bonus to this? You can often synch Google Calendar to your phone, so you can be sent text reminders of when expenses are due and coming out.
Get rid of distractions
If there’s something in your life that’s eating up a lot of time, without producing a lot of money, consider getting rid of it. Work to use most of your time on finding ways to save money, make saving the passion that consumes hours of your life instead of Angry Birds.
Manage emails carefully
Taking the time to read and work with every single email, particularly if you’re signed up for several ‘money saving’ chain letters, is time consuming (and can be costly). Consider using an application like Unroll.me to simplify your daily email experience.
Unroll.me takes all the emails in an inbox on a given day and turns them into a single email newsletter, that then combines every incoming email for the day into one neat package. This makes it easier to read, and quicker to deal with.
Personally, I also completely endorse removing every daily email or newsletter you currently have on the list. These often waste time and often attempt to entice you to waste money as well, the opposite of a productive use of time and money.
Separate your savings and expenses
We all have expenses, some monthly and fixed, some daily and variable. Create a separate bank account for day to day spending, this ensures that you will not overspend and use your expense money. It also helps you to understand your variable spending a little better, having no expense excuse to fall back on.
Use Drop Box, and ShoeBoxed if you own a business
Drop Box is a digital storage facility that allows a certain amount of data management at no cost to the user. The user simply need upload files (like receipts, invoices, bills, etc.) once, and they will instantly become searchable at the click of a button.
Similarly, ShoeBoxed is a God sent program that allows small business owners to manage receipts with instant uploads and searches. This eliminates the need to store paper receipts, and works off of the simple app system.