Delegate or outsource work.
Delegating tasks to coworkers or subordinates lets you focus on the projects and core tasks you should be concentrating on. You may have to spend some hours training the person you’re delegating the task to, but it will all pay off later, when the particular task or set of tasks is taken off your plate. Plus, it’s always good to equip trainees with more work-related skills. If you cannot delegate tasks, then consider outsourcing via the Internet. There are many online workers who are capable of tasks big and small, from creating phonebook entries to transcribing and editing interviews. Delegating and outsourcing frees you from having to do extra or overtime work, letting you go home earlier.
Simplify your daily schedule.
We often try to fit in as much work, appointments, chores, and errands as we can in a day, leaving us too exhausted to even listen to our children tell us about how their day went. Look at your schedule again and see if there are things you can cross out, or reschedule. Always make room for your family, especially if you have young children. If a commitment isn’t necessary, cancel it if possible, or send in your regrets to the host. You may disappoint some people, but that’s nothing compared to the disappointment your children will feel when you’re not around, again.
Start work early and do the important tasks first.
Going to work early—before everyone else arrives—gives you time to focus on your tasks without distractions and constant interruptions. This way, you can get a lot done earlier and leave work earlier too. Determine what your most important tasks are and do those first. Avoid pushing these tasks back at the end of the day, or else you may have to work late or not get the tasks done at all.
Do the small tasks in batches.
Unless your work requires you to check your email every five minutes, limit your mail-checking to twice a day: once in the morning when you arrive at work, and when you get back to your desk after lunch. Frequently checking up on your email (and social networks) takes up a lot of time.
Practice teamwork at home.
When at home, assign chores to family members so you can all work together and spend time together when the chores are done. Even young children can be given simple chores such as tidying up their toys and filling up the dog’s water bowl. Doing chores together also makes for a great family bonding time!