EXTRA TIME:
How To Get More Done Every Single Day

Want to know how to get more done every single day?

You might know of people who pursue successful careers, run several businesses, raise happy families, volunteer tirelessly at charities, and still have time to train for the next marathon.

On the other hand, most of us are stuck in the daily grind, with our goals and dreams being pushed further and further into the backburner.

How do they do it? Do they work 16 hours a day? What do they do that we don’t?

Sure, some successful people have a team handling their daily mundane tasks, so they have more time on their hands. But many other successful people do everything all by themselves!

And in today’s article, I’ll share with you one of their most valuable productivity secrets so that you, too, can get more done every single day.

It’s all about:

EXTRA TIME

“Getting more done” isn’t about working 16 hours a day. Most times, it’s simply about freeing up a little extra time, every single day.

NBA Hall of Famer Larry Bird was known for putting in extra time every training day. Long after his teammates had gone back to the locker room, he’d still be on the court shooting three-point shots.

Even after the training facility turned the lights off, he’d continue honing his shooting skill in the dark!

As a result, Larry Bird is known as one of basketball’s best shooters in history. He led the Boston Celtics to three NBA titles, and is universally considered one of the legends of the sport.

You, too, have that ability. You can free up extra time in your day, every single day. Here’s how.

HOW TO FREE UP TWO EXTRA HOURS A DAY

Most people work for 6-9 hours, then chill out for the rest of the day. Unfortunately, that leaves a lot of time, and many opportunities, on the table. With just a few adjustments, you can free up one or two (or even more) hours each day. Here are some of my tips you can try:

Tip #1: Perfect your daily work routine.

Remember: Before you can achieve your big goals, you got to perfect the little stuff first. So you got to become an expert at doing the little things, every single day.

If you’re a student, stick to your schedule. Go to every class. Whenever you can, do your homework during breaks or in-between classes. Develop the habit of doing things in advance.

If you’re a corporate worker, then work all 8 or 9 hours you’re on the clock. As much as possible, leave everything in the office when you clock out – don’t bring any work home.

This sets you up for my second tip…

Tip #2: Set aside an hour or two every night.

When you don’t need to do any extra work in your evenings, that means you have an extra hour or two to work on your dreams!

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the average Australian spends 4 hours each day on sedentary tasks, such as watching TV and surfing the ‘Net aimlessly. That’s crazy. So there’s little reason why you can’t free up an hour or two every night.

Instead, you can go on Google and do research on the next big thing you want to do in your life. Is it starting a business? Is it traveling the world? Is it learning a new skill or hobby?

Set aside at least one hour each night to pursue your goals. You might need to give up a TV program or two, but hey, that’s what DVR’s and weekends are for. Right?

Tip #3: Get up an hour or two earlier.

This is a success habit that many of the world’s millionaires and billionaires share. They get up at 3AM or 4AM, while the rest of the world is asleep. The house is quiet, your phone is quiet – it’s the perfect time to work on your goals!

When you get up an hour or two earlier in the morning, you can also:

  • Plan your workday, so when 8AM rolls around you just plug in and grind right through the day’s workload.
  • Do a fun exercise, which makes you happier, tougher, and more resilient.
  • Pray, meditate, and clear your mind of negativity.
  • Read a good book.

The early hours of the day and the extra hours you free up at night are your “magic hours,” which you can magically turn into anything you want. Take a look at your daily schedule and ask yourself: How many magic hours can YOU free up?

Important Reminder: Before you decide to stay up later or get up earlier, ask yourself: Are you getting enough rest at night? Because if you’re not, I recommend you develop THAT habit first before trying anything new!

In basketball, there are no ties – each game must have one winner and one loser. That’s why when the game is tied at the end of 4 quarters, they have EXTRA TIME – a few extra minutes to see who deserves the win more. And most times, the team with more energy left gets the win in the end.

So make sure you ALWAYS have some extra energy in the tank. Get enough sleep!

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WHAT CAN YOU DO WITH THREE EXTRA MONTHS?

The three tips above should allow you to free up around two extra hours each day. Even if you only follow the tips on weekdays, two hours a day adds up to nearly three extra months a year.

(And if you make it a daily thing and free up two extra hours every single day, that goes up to FOUR extra months a year. Wow.)

Think of what you can do with three or four extra months.

You can start a business.

You can learn how to play a sport.

You can freelance and earn extra money on the side.

You can learn a crucial new skill to get ahead in your work.

You can (finally) de-clutter the house.

You can write a book.

You can become a musician.

You can put up your website.

What do you want to be, do, or accomplish this year?

Write it down, then check your daily schedule to see how many magic hours can you safely free up every single day to reach that goal.

Then get to work and make the magic happen!

If you have any good ideas on how to get more done every single day, be sure to share it with everyone in the comments section below!

Stay humble and hungry,

ERIC BAILEY

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Posted on August 2, 2015 in Productivity

Responses (28)

  1. Eric scott
    August 10, 2015 at 9:05 am ·

    I also separate my to do list into “awake” and “nap” sections! How funny!

    Right now I’m giving myself a break, and doing a little blog reading while the bunny is down. I took her to the aquarium earlier today and she wore us both out!

    • Jeremy Taylor
      August 10, 2015 at 9:07 am ·

      I love To-DO list, they really help out so much. This is such great information to really help! I put my tennis shoes on in the morning (a flylady tip) and it works wonders on motivation! I love the set your timer idea! We do that with snack time, lunch time so I dont constantly get asked when can I eat.

  2. Gerrard P
    August 10, 2015 at 9:08 am ·

    I’m totally the frustrated perfectionist who gets up at five a.m. every day, with fabulous intentions and my checklist in hand…only to feel like Debbie Downer when I don’t get it all done. I’m getting better about relaxing a bit and not expecting so much from myself. With age I’ve learned that no one is perfect, if you think they are, look under their beds or in their closets..you’ll most likely find everything shoved in there!

  3. Melainie
    August 10, 2015 at 9:10 am ·

    Thanks for the tips. With a baby hanging on me it’s hard to get anything done. I’m gonna try these tips and hopefully be more productive.

    • Brian
      August 10, 2015 at 9:11 am ·

      Enjoy that time with baby hanging on

  4. Galit Breen
    August 10, 2015 at 9:12 am ·

    I can’t express how desperately I needed to read this- a perfect kick in the butt to get organized! Love It! Thank you!

  5. Frank
    August 10, 2015 at 9:20 am ·

    Dear Eric, I just have to tell you how much I love everything you have on both of your websites. I ran across some of your video and audio on you Youtube last week. I have just fell in love with all your saving inspirational tips and then all your advice on organization. I think you are a genious. I know you said that there are things that you dont get done, but you are really doing a great job and you have motivated me to get organized. I really feel inspired. Thank you for sharing your talents and giving the world all the wonderful advice.

    • EBG
      February 16, 2016 at 6:32 am ·

      Thank you so much. I enjoy sharing my passion.

  6. Georgia
    August 10, 2015 at 9:22 am ·

    I have been studying time management for years and have read several books and this is some of the best advice I have ever read. My intense study of time management is motivated by my constant “dropping more balls than I catch” lifestyle. I think these tips will really help me with my struggle. THANKS!

  7. Lainie Anderson
    August 10, 2015 at 9:26 am ·

    Great list, love the honesty, Daily goals sound awesome I get lost in my monthly ones and even forget which ones I was focusing on! Thanks again, Lainie

  8. Nicki
    August 10, 2015 at 9:27 am ·

    Your ideas are great!! What you said in the beginning sounds just like me!! Love the timer idea!!!

  9. Lydia
    August 10, 2015 at 9:34 am ·

    Love this list- excellent ideas!

    I’ve found the wake up early and make a checklist to be instrumental in getting more done. Last fall I started getting up at 5 so that I have about an hour (if I’m lucky, more) before the children get up. It’s amazing what some quiet time can do for you and I feel so much more ready for my day because of the early start!

    And checklists are my sanity saver. That and my planner. I don’t think I could live without either anymore!

    I would add one more thing. Be organized. I know some of what you mentioned is related to being organized but I’m thinking keeping your house organized. I’m still working on this one but the more I “have a place for everything and put everything in it’s place” the more I get done because I’m not wasting time looking for things that I need.

    • Galit Green
      August 10, 2015 at 9:35 am ·

      Wonderful tips! I’m also a big list-maker, paper planner person (drives my teenage son crazy but I’m so trying to get him to organize his schedule a little more). And I always tell myself that if an items makes it to my list, that alone is an accomplishment – everything will get done at some point but it doesn’t all have to be today

  10. henry
    August 10, 2015 at 9:45 am ·

    Everything is very open with a very clear description of the issues. It was truly informative. Your website is useful. Many thanks for sharing!

  11. Ken G
    August 10, 2015 at 9:55 am ·

    Until you have to work all day , or run your own business with staff and subcontractors, , manage budgets and demanding customers in a service based business.. AND have two children, a husband, a household, pets and extra curricular activities for the betterment of yourself, and your family, including volunteering in the community with your children… and having valuable relationships while doing all of this..don’t bother writing a blog about how to get your housework done. And your to do list of organizing cabinets and drawers at 5am. No thanks.

    • Brandi
      August 10, 2015 at 9:57 am ·

      I am sure that you didn’t mean that the way I read it, but your comment comes across a little harsh. I can see that you are a very busy parent, but I believe Eric was only trying to be friendly and help. I’m not trying to be ugly here or start a comment war; I just think that we should all support one another and say things in love. I wouldn’t want my own feelings of inadequacy to color my opinion of Eric’s posts. And believe me, there are many days I get frustrated and just don’t feel like I can get it all done, and to heck with the housework! But we are all trying to be better parents and better people. Please remember that none of us truly knows each other’s specific situations. I only know what I’m sure is a small piece of the beautiful, complex puzzle of your life (only what you posted), and likewise that’s all we really know about Eric. I think what you meant to say was that even with these tips, some of us still just don’t have the time to implement these things and they just wouldn’t be practical specifically in our situations.

      • Anne
        August 10, 2015 at 9:58 am ·

        Well said, Brandi.

  12. lilan
    August 10, 2015 at 10:00 am ·

    Very well said Brandi

  13. Alecia
    August 10, 2015 at 10:02 am ·

    I was diagnosed with an auto-immune disease in January of this year and that causes me to deal with fatigue and often side effects of medications. There are days I don’t get off the couch. Recently I’ve started a new plan to get things done. I create a “to do” list each day of only 6 things. These 6 things can include fixing dinner, packing lunch, doing laundry, grocery shopping. This allows me to not over exhaust myself due to my condition and it also allows me to feel productive in some way. There are times when one thing will not get done and it gets moved to the next day but I have found this to work really well. I write my six things down in a notebook in my kitchen and cross them off when I’m done. I like the act of “crossing them off” the list.

    • Audrey Astin-Stanley
      August 10, 2015 at 10:03 am ·

      Thanks, this is really helpful to me as I have also a similar diagnosis plus my husband is also disabled. I have been frustrated at myself when I couldn’t achieve all that I had planned.

  14. Terry
    August 10, 2015 at 10:05 am ·

    I also have an auto-immune disease and I know what it is like to not be able to move off the sofa I have list of things to do that I never seem to get done. Good reminder,Alecia, to reduce the list to most important. Thanks.

  15. Lynet Witty
    August 10, 2015 at 10:06 am ·

    Great, great list! I love everything on here, and by far my most favorite ones are the reading good books. Found you through Pinterest!

  16. Jennifer Berry
    August 10, 2015 at 10:07 am ·

    One of my students sent me the link to your post. Thanks for the shout out to my book

  17. francisca
    August 10, 2015 at 10:08 am ·

    You’re welcome!

  18. Debra
    August 10, 2015 at 11:28 am ·

    Thanks so much for your blog. It felt like I was reading my own. Words. It is nice to know there is someone out there just like me.
    Just wanted to say thanks.

  19. Tony Mason
    August 10, 2015 at 11:37 am ·

    Thank you!!

  20. Grace Houle
    August 10, 2015 at 11:40 am ·

    I loved this article. Informative and straight to the point.
    My advice is that a’Life is short.Moments are precious. Don’t waste time on things that don’t matter.” Love the timer idea. It is so easy to spin my wheels on things. Thank you for taking the time to write this.

  21. Maria Ramos
    August 10, 2015 at 11:42 am ·

    Hello Eric,
    I’m so glad to have discovered your blog. I‘m sure my response to your post is not a priority, however, I must say I am finding myself agreeing to your words spoken here. Because? I do the exact same thing. eg Make daily list.

    Thank you for sharing…

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