1) Have a regular place for things and put them back when you?re done with them.
If you always set your keys on the table in the hall when you come in, you?ll always be able to find them easily when you go out ? and never waste time looking for them. And what works with your keys will work with just about everything else that you use regularly, too.
2) Don't multitask.
It's one of the biggest time wasters there is for most people. Why? Because as Kendra Cherry points out in The Cognitive Costs of Multitasking, Multitasking can reduce productivity by approximately 40-percent according to some researchers ? perhaps because switching from one task to another makes it difficult to tune out distractions and can cause mental blocks that can slow down your progress.
3) Use a calendar and write down everything you need to do and when you need to do it ? on the same calendar.
It doesn't matter whether your chosen calendar is electronic or paper. What matters is that you create and maintain one "appointment central", a one stop shop, if you will, of everything you must and want to do. This serves two purposes; it ensures you don't miss anything important and it serves as a to-do list. Using a calendar that can travel with you (such as a calendar application on a smartphone) is a real time saver compared with ferrying bits of paper back to wherever your paper calendar is located.
4) Relearn how to focus.
Many of us waste oodles of time just because we're so easily distracted. Instead of focusing on one task and finishing it in short order, we allow ourselves to be pulled off task numerous times. The result? The original task takes much longer than it could have and should have. Improving Your Concentration is one way that you can increase your ability to stay on task.
5) Stop procrastinating.
Procrastination in itself isn't bad. What's bad is what happens to whatever you're procrastinating about when you do it. Problems grow. Misunderstanding multiply. Trash piles up. Dealing with things when they're smaller not only saves time but makes it much easier on yourself too.
6) Plan your trips and consolidate your chores.
Imagine you have seven items on your grocery list and instead of making one visit to a grocery store and buying all of them, you make seven separate trips, buying one item each time. That's the equivalent of what many of us do with our shopping and chores. Instead, to save time, think ahead. Some things can be picked up or done on the way to or from work. Or a trip to one place can be expanded to include other stops that are close to one another.
Prepare for the future by considering what you should do ahead of time to avoid being 'rushed for time'. Plan clothes for the week, make a grocery list and menu for the week ahead, add 15 minutes to your estimated travel time in order to leave early just in case of traffic jams or unexpected delays, force yourself to begin a project and dedicate a small amount of time each day to work on it, make sure your gas tank is full enough the evening before so you don't have to waste time in the morning, schedule one day to clean and organize a room for 5 minutes and keep that going to save time cleaning (Mon-5 min bathroom, Tues-5 min living room/den, Wed-5 min kitchen, Thurs-5 min bedrooms, etc).