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365 Ways to Save Time.

There indeed may be 365 ways to save time, but they aren't all listed in this mistitled book. While Hedrick puts forth numerous useful suggestions on how to make the most of your time, she has a habit of repeating some of them, often on as many as three or four occasions. Moreover, her lame attempts at homespun philosophy fail to enhance her point. For instance, when talking about the problem of overcrowded bookshelves, she writes that "Some books ... are like old friends, they should be kept and treasured." Please!

Nevertheless, this book should be read and kept, especially by those whose chaotic lives have worn them to a frazzle. Hedrick--who previously authored Five Days to an Organized Life--rightly points out, for example, that "being neat is not the same as being organized. People who are organized know the next three things they're going to do and the order in which they're going to do them." Organized people also adapt their schedules according to their all-important energy level. If you're a little sluggish today, switch over to easy, no-brainer tasks. If you're feeling peppy and on top of your game, finish today's chores and then start on tomorrow's. If you don't feel well, slow down and rest because, if you keep going full throttle, you'll get even sicker and really fall behind. Also remember that sleep is vital. Do not cut back on it just because there's too much to do. A well-rested person gets more done in four hours than a tired one does in eight. Above all, keep in mind that the "word no' is the single most effective time management tool there is."

Much of Hedrick's advice here seems too obvious. After all, it doesn't take a brain surgeon to compile a filing system, keep a pocket notepad handy for jotting down reminders, hold onto directions so they are accessible for your next trip, or realize that all work and no play is a sure-fire formula for burnout and inefficiency. Still, we all know people who always are running behind schedule, look disheveled and overwhelmed no matter where and when you see them, make even the simplest tasks an exercise in complexity, and can't seem to remember anything. So, maybe even the most obvious suggestions must be spelled out.

"Time is the great equalizer," points out the author. "No matter who you are, how much money you have, or where you live on earth, we all have the same twenty-four hours a day. ... Don't waste it." That may be the soundest advice of all.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Society for the Advancement of Education
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Author:Barrett, Wayne M.
Publication:USA Today (Magazine)
Article Type:Book Review
Date:May 1, 1993
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