When things are repetitious and you do it on a scheduled basis often enough, it is ruining your productivity. The solution is simple – automate it! If the task is repetitious, automate. Just like the saying goes,
“when life gives you lemons, make lemonade”,
or as I would like to say, when things gets repetitious, automate it. It is not worth our precious time to do something repeatedly like a mindless zombie. Instead, we should take full advantage of technology and free online services to automate these repetitious tasks. Here are 5 things you should automate.
1. PC Maintenance
One of the things that people should be doing, but often aren’t doing is maintaining their computer(s). Just like keeping the house nice and tidy, our computers need maintenance also, whether it be physical or virtual. Things that should be maintained include cleaning up clutter, backing up your files, defragmenting your hard drives (unless you have a SSD, then no), and virus scans. Schedule these tasks so you can just set it and forget it.
Doing so will save you time and energy without having to do a thing while it is running in the background. Here’s a neat tutorial by HowToGeek on how to perform the automation process for Windows PCs http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/30677/guide-to-running-common-maintenance-tasks-automatically-in-windows/
2. Processing Payments
Paying the bills can be tedious and time consuming. With online banking becoming more and more popular, it is time to utilize that to our advantage.
The ideal case would be to have all your bills be charged on the first day of every month so that you can schedule your bank account or credit card to pay off the fees on the specified date. You can do this by giving a call to your bank and working out the necessary changes.
This will not only save you time, but will also potentially prevent you from forgetting to pay the bills ever again. Do note that you should double check that things do go correctly afterwards, because unexpected things could go wrong.
3. Customer Support
One way to handle this is to create a support page which contains a list of frequently asked questions that users might have as well as tutorials on how to use your products and services. That way, it would mean fewer phone calls to manage, more time saved, and customers don’t have to waste their time on hold.
4. Social Media
Social media can be a very time consuming task, especially for those who are content creators. After every blog post or major update, we have to wait for the proper timing to post, answer people’s questions in the comments, and a few other things. People often spend about 3 hours on social media. The easiest solution is – you guessed it – to automate it!
How Do I Automate My Social Media?
The process is easy. Platforms such as Hootsuite and Buffer both do a fantastic job at automating social media and both comes with a free plan. Keep in mind that there will be limited features, but you can take advantage of their scheduling features so you can spend your time doing other things while it does all the posting work for you. Of course, you will still have to do the content scheduling. That part, unfortunately, cannot be automated.
5. Email List Newsletter
If you are a beginner in blogging, then chances are you have an email list (if you don’t, you should). There are lots of things you can do to optimize the time with this task, especially when it comes to things such as automating when the emails get sent out, as well as sending particular email messages when new users sign up. You don’t have to manually email each and every one of them, because there are free tools out there that have built in automation features to make the process a lot easier. Platforms such as Mailchimp do just that.
If the task is taking up to much of your time, and if it is something repetitious, then chances are you should be able to automate it or at least part of the process.