Sunday, January 17, 2010

Making Time

I recently shared that I was committed to taking back control my incoming email in 2010. So far, I have unsubscribed from at least 25 mass mailing lists that had been clogging up my inbox. Most I just deleted. Some I redirected to my personal email account. Let me share, it has been fantastic! In addition to reduced volume, I am able to better focus my attention. It is a real time saver, and productivity booster. Fresh off those gains, I have begun looking at other ways to be a more effective manager of my time and productivity. Here are a few things that are helping:
  1. RSS feeds to my iphone via MobileRSS - I had tried an iGoogle page previously, but it didn't fit well into my routines. MobileRSS is great for me ... I can skim google alert notifications, favorite blogs, as well as ASAE & The Center news releases and other feeds all on my commute on the subway. When I see a topic worth additional consideration, I can view the full item and/or email the link for follow-up.
  2. Online Bill Payments coupled with online banking- Who likes opening envelopes, writing checks, putting a stamp on, and getting the envelope in the mail? Now, I get simple notification of most new bills by email, review the details in a flash, and authorize direct debit from my bank. And a email series of email notifications from my bank allow me to track payments and account balances.
  3. A mix of online and in person shopping. When I know what I want and can wait a few days for it to arrive, online shopping is an excellent convenience, especially with two small children in the house. On the other hand, our BJ's membership has really been great too. Perhaps surprisingly, though, it is not the prices that I really like (in fact, often I think I can do as well or better on specific sale items at supermarkets). Rather, what is most valuable to me is that I am able to get diapers, groceries, printer cartridges, and other needed items such as car seats in one trip. And the BJs close to my house is open late enough that I can do all that after the kids are tucked in.

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