There will be a day when I will probably work from home, but as of today, I do have a full-time job and so does my husband. Since we both work five days a week, we must keep things orderly so we can get things done in a timely manner.

We are people of routine, you know it’s true. We like to sit at “that” chair during dinner or we will only take”that” route to our favorite store. I totally get it. I even have a routine at work even though my days are different. Since my time is divided between ministry, blogging, businesses, and kids activities most days, I’ve made adjustments and improvements on how to manage my time.  I needed a routine that wouldn’t be too hard to stick to and so far this routine has been working for me. As things change in my life, I’m sure my routine will change as well. Here are some things that have helped me maximize my time.

Take advantage of commute time

The total amount of time I spend in the car each way from home, my daughter’s school, and then to work is about 25-30 minutes. That’s an hour a day, 5 hours a week, and about 20 hours a month. Before, we would pray then listen to music after. Then it happened, my daughter received a low grade on her spelling test. I felt so bad. Even though she is apart of an after-school program, it focuses more so on math, practicing spelling words is left to the parents.

I made some adjustments. For the first half of the commute (going to work), after songs and prayers, I taught her Bible verses and we would memorize books of the Bible. For the second half of our commute (going home), we went over her day and I had her look at her spelling words, say it out loud repeatedly and spell it three times. After that, she quizzed herself. Once we incorporated this into our routine, my daughter had nothing but straight A’s on her tests. I used this time to help my child with school work, but for you, it may be listening to an audiobook or practicing a speech for an upcoming event. Just make sure to drive responsibly.

Have a power lunch

Most people I know that work full-time is given an hour lunch break. I am one of them. I don’t need a whole hour to eat my food. During that time, I check my calendar, schedule, or upcoming events. I have a check-in time with my husband and call doctor’s offices if needed. I even try to catch up on current events. I may take a quick nap (don’t worry I set the alarm) or read a book. It’s more effective than staring at an empty plate.

Ask for a helping hand

My older kids know what they have to do when we get home. It goes something like this. Backpacks and lunch boxes are emptied and put away. Shoes go into the drawer and hands are washed. Playtime follows quickly after. I was left packing lunch, gathering laundry, cleaning up their items. This left me exhausted. So I told asked my kids to help mommy with items around the house. Specifically their items. They were delighted to help and they actually enjoyed it.

My 4 and 5-year-old pack their lunch the night before, clean up after themselves after playtime (involuntarily) and take their own baths so I can focus on the baby and other areas in the house. By the time my husband comes home from work, the kids are about ready for bed. It’s ok to ask for help from mom, dad, husband, friend to take some of the load off of you.

Pay for the help

Think of it as an investment in yourself. It’s ok to pay a bit extra to have your groceries delivered to your house. It might actually be beneficial so you won’t grab random items at the store. Or if you need help with coding, hire a web developer to fix the issues for you. This will save you time in the end. Use that time to spend time with family or work on your next project.

Make a morning or evening list

Some people are morning people, some are night owls, whatever side you lean towards, create a weekly or daily list.  Do it before the day begins or when the day ends. It helps to keep you on track. And it’s OK if tasks are done for that day. Roll it over or cross-out items that are not a high priority.  My lists are from Monday-Friday. Weekends are off limits for me.

Use paid time off to get a bit of work done

I do not apply this idea for holidays like Thanksgiving or Christmas. Those days are family time for me. Plus I’m usually cooking during those times. I’m talking about requesting off 3-5 random days to step away from work to recharge. Most full-time jobs give their employees a number of days for paid time off. Please use it to your benefit. Take time off to not only have fun but work on your projects or fix something in the house or get your hair done.

Limit time on social media and TV

I like a good show and a good social media feed, but if I let myself, I can spend a little too much time in its presence. Some are more disciplined than I am in this area. So what is currently helping me is removing notifications on my phone and watching pre-recorded shows.

Are you looking for ways to maximize your time or days? Let me know your plans.