The irony is all of your home tech is supposed to save you time and ‘enhance’ your life. But technology also can be a huge time suck.
A piece of advice…
Don’t get distracted (too much) by the many lures of your tech.
Keep it working for you!
Here are seven ways I use my own tech to help squeeze a little more time out of my week…
1. Always Know the Time as You Sleep
You wake up in the dead of night and wonder what time it is. If you’re like me, you’ve long retired your clock radio. Now, only your smartphone hangs out on your bedside table. But you’ve got to reach over and activate it if you want to see what time it is. How annoying is that? Wouldn’t it be great if you could quickly just peer up at the ceiling to see what time it is?
2. More Impulse Buying on Amazon
Do you keep forgetting to get maple syrup at the supermarket for Sunday pancakes? Just putting it on a list for the next time you hit Stew Leonards will delay you until you actually make that trip.
I say order the replacement item on Amazon Prime as soon as you run out.
With ‘Prime,’ you don’t waste money on extra shipping charges with this one-off scattered shopping approach.
(Organic Maple Syrup. Click.)
So yes, this falls under the category of impulse buying…but only for your kitchen staples.
3. Keep your Home Cozy from Anywhere
Did you forget to turn down the heat before you left the house this morning?
No worries. You don’t have to turn around to check.
If you have a smart thermostat like a Nest, you can adjust the temperature from an app on your iPhone from anywhere in the world.
4. Catch the Train with Your Smartphone
Running late to your Metro North train at Grand Central Terminal for your evening commute out of New York City? And a few saved seconds can make the difference whether you make your train or not?
(Yes, that’s how I roll.)
Your TrainTime app on your smartphone will quickly inform you which gate your train is leaving from.
And you can quickly buy a digital train ticket using the MTA eTix app, instead of waiting on line at a ticket kiosk to purchase a physical one.
(And that app is going to be especially handy in the dead of winter when you encounter an exposed and frozen ticket kiosk that’s malfunctioning.)
5. Stop Going to the Post Office
Why would you ever choose to waste even a fraction of your existence at the post office buying stamps? The lines are endless. It’s like Purgatory in there.
Even the stamp-dispensing square autobot will drain your life force.
Why not simply purchase your stamps from the convenience of your home computer?
It’s wicked quick at store.usps.com…
(Sure, you pay a $1.25 shipping charge for a roll of 100 Forever stamps. But I say that’s more than worth it for the convenience.)
6. Avoid Greeting Card Aisles
Do you still feel like you have to troll for greeting cards at the local CVS or Walgreens to get the ‘perfect card?’
Well, STOP IT!
You know what I mean… searching up and down that forest of disorganized generic thoughts. Finding that perfect card, only to realize there’s no matching envelope, and having to start all over again.
It’s no longer a badge of honor to say to your loved one… “I spent an hour looking for the perfect card!”
(My mom used to always to say that to me.)
There’s got to be a better way!
Well, of course there is…
Here are three online destinations you can visit-
These websites contain virtually all the greeting cards you could ever want.
Plus they’ll mail them for you!
Whoah…. Now that’s really a paradigm shift.
7. Get E-ZPass or Bust
All right, who here doesn’t have E-ZPass yet?
What? You’re still waiting on long lines in your car at tollbooths?
Please stand up and walk upstairs.
Now go to bed…. There’s no dinner for you.
(And here’s something to ponder as you drift off…
Technology is quickly killing off the tollbooth.)
The rest of you can sleep soundly knowing your E-ZPass is working hard to save you time. But before you start your snooze, you might want to check in on your E-ZPass account just to make sure it’s current.
You don’t want E-ZPass to list the car you owned a decade ago.
How Did It Get So Late So Soon?
Look, I’m not saying you should stop wasting your precious time checking Facebook twenty times or spending hours on a Sunday night combing through your weekend family photos using Lightroom.
I get it.
I’m just pointing out how you should also be very deliberate to find ways to use your tech to save you time.
And maybe… just maybe… at the end…
You’ll break even.