Every week, Alex and I write 5 posts for our daily "Connect Devotional" that we put out through Chatham Church (you can sign up for it here: http://chathamchurch.us9.list-manage1.com/subscribe?u=9a87a1def430704074142eb1f&id=d3b12cc7d8). The posts are 300 or so words long and have a little bit of formatting (bold at the top, italics at the bottom, paragraph breaks throughout).
Every week, I need to load the posts onto our church website and into Mailchimp (a site that sends the posts as emails every day). It usually takes me about an hour to post everything.
But then I made a small change.
I switched something in the order of my workflow and ... like magic ... cut the hour in half.
I won't bore you with the technical details. What's important to know is that that half-hour's savings has held. And it's had a small but noticeable impact on my work.
First, the small change has given me additional flexibility. I have many more 30 minute gaps in my day than hour-long gaps. This means I can get the task done earlier in the week.
Secondly, the small change has made me more willing to do the task. For some reason, an hour of rote computer work seems more than twice as miserable as 30 minutes. I'd have to fight that procrastination urge to get it done. Now, that urge is much weaker.
Thirdly, knocking the task out earlier in the week frees up mental space and energy for all of my other work.
Take a look around you, around your workplace or around your house. Is there some place where you can tighten a process and shave off 20-30 minutes? Give it a try. See if it makes a difference in your week.