There are lots of ways technology has made tasks in our lives easier. Can you automate these six things?
Webster’s Dictionary defines automate as:
“to run or operate (something, such as a factory or system) by using machines, computers, etc., instead of people to do the work.”
When you think of it in those terms, our washer, dryer, and stove have automated tasks that were once done solely by people. There are six other ways you can automate your life to save you hours each week.
1. Brewing Coffee
Even though I am a morning person, I move super slow for the first 15 or 20 minutes of my day. Load the coffee maker at night and program it to have your coffee ready for you the next morning. This is a great way to prep for tomorrow today.
2. Paying Bills
Most utility companies and some creditors offer electronic billing and bill payment. If not, check with your bank or credit union to setup automatic payments. This is one less check to write, mail, and track.
I recently learned that Soap.com offers a program called Auto Ship:
Set up a recurring order through AutoShip and never run out of the stuff you need – from everyday items like pet food, diapers, vitamins and dish soap, to must haves like your favorite granola bars or lipstick. Once you create your perfect order, it will arrive at your door every week, every month or whenever you choose.
Amazon’s Subscribe & Save program works in a similar manner:
- Choose from laundry supplies, coffee pods, baby care products, and more.
- Pick the number of units you want to receive and the frequency of your delivery.
Although I have not personally used either program, if I had a larger budget for these types of items, I would use either without hesitation. A blogger I follow has her toilet paper delivered to make her life easier. Now, that’s what I call smart.
- Air fresheners that last 30 days like the Glade Sense & Spray Automatic Freshener. We do have several of these in our house. It’s easy to remember to replace them at the beginning of each month.
- I wonder how well the Scrubbing Bubbles Automatic Shower Cleaner works:
“Simply touch the button and walk away—the dual sprayer spins 360 degrees to spray a penetrating cleaner on all four walls and tub. The formula prevents tough stains like mold & mildew and helps remove soap scum, allowing you to wait to clean your shower for up to 30 days!”
- Dishwashers save 230 hours of personal time in a year versus hand-washing dishes, according to EnergyStar.
- Robotic vacuums have sensors, brushes, and suction devices to pick up dust and debris from floors. Again, I do not own one of these, but you can read Life As Mom‘s review and Simple Mom‘s review.
The slow cooker is an easy way to load up your ingredients and walk away. In four to eight hours, you will have a warm, homemade meal. You can prepare the night before and refrigerate your meal or load it in the morning before work and return home to dinner. Some models are programmable and include a timer to keep your meal warm or delay the start time.
6. Using Your Cell Phone
I have a Samsung phone. There’s a feature called “S Voice.” Using only my voice, I can make a call, send a text message, use the navigation system, create a memo, add a task or appointment to my calendar, check the weather, and use certain apps.
If you have a different type of Android phone, you can “Use your voice to search and more. Speak instead of type, using your voice to control your phone or tablet. Search the web and your phone, call your contacts, send emails, get directions and listen to music, all without worrying about having to type.” Apple users have Siri to “use your voice to send messages, make calls, set reminders, and more.”
In an automating mood? I also wrote a blog post about How to Automate Your Job Search.