These Genius Life Hacks Are Guaranteed to Save You Up To 20 Hours a Week

It doesn’t feel like there is enough time in the day to get everything done you’d like to accomplish, let alone in a week. Some people consistently work overtime at their jobs, others have kids and pets to care for, and we’re all trying to have some semblance of a social life.

What if you could save seconds, minutes, even hours each day just by changing a few small things at home? We’ve ranked these genius life hacks that are guaranteed to make you more productive based on how much time they’ll save you. You won’t believe the simple way you can save an hour each day (page 14).

15. Brush your teeth in the shower


You’ll save a few seconds by shower multitasking. | iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: 30 seconds

Yes, you still have to commit to the act of brushing. However, if you grab your brush and paste and hop into the shower, you can brush your teeth while letting your conditioner sink in or just enjoying the peace and quiet.

Who doesn’t love that minute of totally uninterrupted “me time” in the shower in the morning?

Next: This will change your concept of ‘grab-and-go.’

14. Keep a kit of necessities by the door

shoe shelves

You won’t have to run around finding items. | aerogondo/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: 45 seconds to 1 minute per item

Put a shoe organizer filled with crates near the door or use a hanging one with pockets. Instead of filling the slots with shoes, place things like baby powder, Tide-To-Go, and floss by the door.

This gives you the luxury of grabbing a quick fix on your way out the door. And if the kids create a mess, you won’t have to run upstairs or dig around for the wipes to clean up.

Next: Who needs an iron?

13. Use the steam from the shower instead of an iron

Steam Iron

Let your shower do the steaming for you. | straga/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: 5 minutes

If you’re scarce on time, skip the ironing board. Hang a shirt or pair of slacks on your bathroom door while you enjoy a hot shower. Your clothes will be wrinkle-free and appear pressed within the 10 or so minutes it takes you to shower.

Next: This iron-free steaming hack will amaze you.

12. Or put ice cubes in your drier to steam out clothing

Drying Clothes

Your dryer can get out wrinkles, too. | monkeybusinessimages/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: 5 minutes

If you need to steam a shirt but don’t have to shower, use your dryer. The dryer’s heat will release moisture from the ice cubes and help loosen up your clothes’ wrinkles. The tumble dry setting will smooth out any remaining folds and you’ll save time!

Next: Getting to the gym is half the battle: This is how to guarantee you make it on time.

11. Pack your gym and work bag the night before

woman holding gym bag in a fitness centre.

Be prepared for the next day. | Ridofranz/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 5 minutes

Think ahead the night before and pack your work and gym bag with your electronics, chargers, clean exercise gear, keys, and wallet. It saves you from the aforementioned morning scramble. You’re also more likely to make it on time if you don’t have to turn back because you left your keys on the kitchen table.

Next: This is one crucial productivity tip you may not have mastered.

10. Know when to multitask

woman braiding her daughters

Multitask some morning activities to save time. | shironosov/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 5 minutes

For example, braiding your kid’s hair while they eat their cereal is an easy, simple way to save a few minutes (as long as they don’t resist the hairdo).

However, hopping on a phone call while driving to work or school is distracting and can actually waste time. You’re more prone to drive slower, make incorrect turns or judgment calls, and have an unproductive conversation while in the car.

Next: Never miss the most important meal of the day.

9. Leave your breakfast items at work

Small fridge

Don’t worry every day about your breakfast. | Vofpalabra/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 10 minutes a day

Avoid the drive-thru to save time (and calories) and prepare a to-go breakfast like overnight oats or a yogurt and granola cup. If you have a refrigerator at work, take compact and prepared items and leave them in your work fridge.

You’ll save more time in the morning at home and can eat breakfast whenever you feel like it at your desk.

Next: Scheduling is simpler when everything is in one place.

8. Keep 1 master calendar

Writing on a calendar

It’s easier to have everything in one place. | YakobchukOlena/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 10 minutes

You’ll spare yourself the aggravation of digging everywhere for that one appointment card and save time as well. Keep the master calendar in a central location where all the kids or roommates in the house can access it. Everyone will save a bit of time (and sanity) if they know there is a designated space where all of the week’s tasks are logged.

Next: You may have to fight the kids on this one, but it’ll save you a crazy amount of time.

7. Limit technology

Happy little girl holding smart phone

Don’t let your phone kill productivity. | Poike/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 5 to 20 minutes

Watching television in the morning or periodically checking your phone can put a serious dent in your productivity as you get ready for the day ahead. Limit your tech time to checking the weather and any missed calls on your way to work and before you head out for the evening to save a few extra minutes.

This goes for the kids, as well. Dodge the “just five more minutes” argument by removing technology from the morning all together. They’ll be more focused on getting ready for school and out the door on time.

Next: We promise you won’t miss Starbucks if you invest in this time-saver.

6. Invest in a Nespresso machine

Espresso coffee machine in kitchen

Skip the trip to Starbucks. | efired/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Depending on your commute to the coffee shop, up to 20 minutes a day

We get it, coffee fanatics. Few things beat your morning Americano, or your mid-morning Americano, or your after-dinner decaf Americano.

Save yourself the commute to Starbucks and plenty of money by investing in high-quality espresso machines that use pods (it’s like a Keurig for the strong stuff).

Next: You’ll save time and look amazing with this hack.

5. Pick your outfits for the entire week on Sunday

Young woman choosing clothes

Cut the daily decision-making process. | Milenko Bokan/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 40 minutes a week

Organizing an outfit — whether it be for work, the gym, or a late-night function — is more aggravating (and often more time-consuming) if you do it immediately before you leave the house. You’ll save time and stress by setting aside 20 minutes every Sunday to decide what you’ll be wearing that week. Plus, if you make Sunday laundry day, you’ll cut a few more minutes since you won’t have to fold all the fresh clothes and put them away.

Pull clothing from the clean laundry and hang with your outfits for the week.The alternative? Scrambling and trying on dozens of outfits 10 minutes before you need to be in the car.

Next: This hack guarantees happy kids and a quick morning routine.

4. And wrap your kids’ outfits into ‘clothing burritos’

Girl choosing clothes to wear

They’ll be able to dress on their own. | vitapix/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 40 minutes a week

One mom had an incredible hack to save a few minutes each day and probably avoid a few tantrums. “I make ‘outfit burritos,'” Emily B. recounted. She rolls up the whole outfit including shirt, pants, socks, and underwear. “She just grabs one she wants to wear each morning; zero time spent deciding!”

Next: Grab the cookbook: It’s time to make meals efficiently.

3. Meal prep lunches on Sunday

Stack of dinners in containers for later use.

Use your free time on Sundays. | Caymia/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Around 60 minutes a week

Meal prepping takes many shapes and forms depending on your lifestyle and family. Whether you’re setting aside carrots, sandwiches, and apples for the kids or making a jumbo quinoa salad to divvy up for work each day, getting the prep, cooking, and cleaning work out of the way on Sunday will save you plenty of time.

“While I’m cleaning up after dinner, I take out my storage containers and separate tomorrow’s leftover dinner from tomorrow’s leftover lunch,” Mikey Rox, a writer for Wise Bread, said. “They both go in the fridge, so I can pull one out for my midday meal at work.”

Next: This hack will make you productive, healthier, and save you an hour every day. 

2. Set a social media timer

girl using Social media concept.

Limit yourself on social media. | SonerCdem/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: Up to an hour a day

The average person is spending around 50 minutes daily on Facebook’s suite of owned apps alone (Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger) alone. That doesn’t count Twitter, dating apps like Tinder or Bumble, and watching YouTube. Limit yourself to 15 minutes at different points throughout the day to avoid the time-sucking spiral that is Car Karaoke or cat videos.

You’ll easily save anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour each day if you limit yourself to 15 minutes of social media during your lunch break, 15 minutes after work, and 15 minutes before bed.

Next: We bet you’ve never heard of this time-saving app.

1. Let an app wait on hold for you

Annoyed on phone

There’s an app for that. | fizkes/iStock/Getty Images

  • Time saved: 2 minutes to 1 hour per call

The revolutionary “Lucyphone” is waiting in the app store to save you an incredible amount of time. We’ve all been there: Waiting on hold with customer service, on the phone with the DMV or insurance company, or just trying to order pizza at peak hours.

Lucyphone will do the waiting for you — just enter the company’s number, your number, and go about your business. When your call reaches an agent they’ll give you a ring back to connect you. So far, Lucyphone saved their users a total of 84 years, 59 days, and 10 hours (and that’s just at the time of this post).

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