Renowned speaker Anne Grady is a best-selling author, two-time TEDx speaker, trainer, survivor, optimist, inspirer, and truth-bomb dropper. She has earned recognition as a foremost authority on communication, leadership, emotional intelligence, and resilience.

Anne captivates audiences with her unfiltered honesty, sharp wit, genuine authenticity, and profound insights. Drawing from her own experiences, she shares inspiring personal anecdotes, along with cutting-edge research-backed insights and practical tools for applying learning to real-life situations. Her talks empower individuals to enhance relationships, navigate change, and overcome adversity—all while delivering doses of laughter along the way.

In the following article, Anne shares how a small shift in your day can bring big results.

Gaining back just 30 minutes a day equates to 7.6 days per year. That’s like getting an extra vacation.

Here are 5 ways to get a little time back:

1. Digital Detox: Turn off notifications unless they are absolutely necessary. Schedule time each day to check email, rather than responding as they come in. And put your phone away. Just having your phone on your desk limits cognitive bandwidth and working memory. If you must have your phone with you, put it on Do Not Disturb. 

2. Set a timer: Ever heard of the Pomodoro Technique? It’s like interval training for your brain. Work hard for a set period, then take a breather. It’s HIIT for your productivity muscles. 

  • Identify a task to complete.
  • Set a timer for 25 minutes.
  • Work on the task with no distractions.
  • When the alarm sounds, take a 5-minute break.
  • Repeat the process 3 more times.
  • Take a longer 30-minute break and start again.

This does not mean when the alarm sounds you read email and check social. It means you take a 5-minute, restful break. Breathe, walk, or daydream. Just rest.

3. Prioritize: Each day, there are a handful of critical tasks that must be done. It could be finishing a report or picking up a prescription, but these are the imperative tasks that are a must-have, not nice to have. Be deliberate about choosing a handful of imperatives each day.

Then, there are important tasks that you’d like to do, but if you don’t get to them that day, you’ll survive. Divide your task list between the two each day. If you can’t get to the important tasks, don’t just move them to the next day, add them to a day when you will have time to focus on them.

4. Delegate: You’re not the Lone Ranger of time management. Learn to delegate tasks – whether it’s asking for help from colleagues or bribing your kids with pizza to help more around the house.

At work, write down all of your tasks in one column. In the second column, identify who else could do the task, and in the third column, write down who should do it. Chances are, you can delegate some things if you can relinquish control. Delegation is a great development tool for others. Remember, teamwork makes the dream work.

5. Be mindful: No, you don’t have to sit in a full lotus pose and drink green tea but don’t forget to bring yourself back to the present moment when you start to feel overwhelmed. Take a few deep breaths, recognize how you feel physically and emotionally, and decide how to best move forward.

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