Who wouldn’t say yes to having a little freer time to do what they wanted with their life? So many people spend the vast majority of their time working that – even if you’ve got a hybrid schedule or other flexibility – it can feel like you barely get to do the things you love. Add kids, partners, housework, exercising, and socializing to the mix, and it’s no wonder if you feel overwhelmed.

Trying to do too much at once can leave you burned out and exhausted, without the motivation to do anything. If you feel like you’re drowning in a wave of “to-do” lists and obligations, you might want to just shut the door and stop doing anything. You won’t have time for any of your favorite things, whether your passion lies in reading books, painting, sculpting, checking out movies, playing live casino online games, going to bars, attending classes, or something else.

It’s time to take control and regain some of the precious minutes of your life that are getting lost to the general chaos, so you can have more time for the things you truly love – but how can you do this? We’re going to cover some top tips and techniques for clawing back some of your free time and making room in a chaotic world for the things that matter to you. Let’s get started!

Tip 1) Organize Thoroughly

Organization is one of those things that takes time, but it pays it back with interest. Do you know how much time you probably waste just looking for something when you need it, rather than being able to lay your hand on it straight away? Five minutes here, ten minutes there; it adds up quickly!

Having a place for the important things in your life (like car keys, crucial documents, calendar dates, and more) can save you an enormous amount of time. Create a “home” for important items and return them to this home whenever you use them. You’ll soon build a pattern in your brain, and this will help you to find things easily. It takes a little discipline at first, but it’s worth the effort.

Tip 2) Group Tasks

You can get through tasks much more efficiently if you group similar (or overlapping) tasks. For example, if you need to print a file, check whether you need to print anything else at the same time. If you’ve got an email to deal with, can you clear out your inbox while you’re there? If you’ve got to go to the bank, are there other tasks that can be handled while you’re in town?

This will improve your efficiency and encourage you to deal with tasks in effective ways. Look for similar tasks and group them, then tackle them all at once. This will reduce the amount of time you waste on transitioning between tasks, and waiting for things to happen (e.g., the computer to turn on, the time it takes to drive into town, etc.).

Tip 3) Look After Yourself

It’s very hard to be productive and efficient when you’re feeling run-down and exhausted. That means that self-care needs to be high on your list. If you’re a busy person, you’ll find that looking after yourself often takes a low priority, but by eating well, sleeping well, and giving yourself a break when you need it, you’ll improve your efficiency and make it easier to get through your chores and obligations quickly.

Tip 4) Focus When Possible

People who feel like they are overwhelmed have a bad tendency to turn to multitasking as a solution. This is logical: you feel like you’re saving time when you try to do three things at once – but often, you aren’t. Instead, you’re decreasing your efficiency because your brain has to keep swapping back and forth, and retrieving information that will allow you to make the switch.

You should therefore try to focus on a single task until you’re ready to move on to the next one. A multitude of studies have shown that while many people think they can multitask effectively, we really can’t; we’re just switching from one task to another. This is often inefficient and results in both tasks taking longer and being done poorly. It’s much better to pay attention to one thing until it’s complete, and then move on to the next.

Tip 5) Delegate

It’s unfortunately very easy for one person to end up doing the bulk of the work in any household. This is true whether it’s childcare, housework, organizing the social calendar, etc. The more ingrained this becomes, the harder it is to split the work more evenly, because other family members won’t have the necessary information to complete the jobs.

It’s important to divide things up as fairly as possible, so everyone is shouldering their share of the chores. If you find you do most of the work in your home, try making some task lists to split things more evenly. This will help you to recover time and give you more freedom to do the things you love.