Time and productivity columnist for the NZ Herald

Robyn Pearce: Use technology to save your time, money and sanity

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Technology can help you out with almost anything these days. Photo / iStock
Technology can help you out with almost anything these days. Photo / iStock

Doing the grocery shopping is one of those tasks that we all have to do - and it's a time-consumer. You might be one of the smart ones who has already changed to buying your groceries online, in which case you can feel very virtuous.

Until about a month ago I'd been putting off the change. It was justified by the fact that my schedule is very varied and no two weeks are the same.

However, two experiences within a couple of weeks of each other gave the kick in the .... I needed.

The first one was delivered by a two-year old.

I was babysitting three granddaughters for three days. This included my youngest grandchild of not quite two. Monday came. The weather was reasonable so the two bigger girls carefully rode their bikes to school whilst I pushed the toddler in her stroller.

Once the big girls were safely delivered I decided to pop into the nearby supermarket with the two-year old for a few supplies.

All was well until I slowed down in the wine department, looking for a particular brand of Pinot Noir. Bethany started to wriggle and then stood up. Practicing a potential future career as a ballerina her pointed toes waved over the metal frame of the pushchair.

Smiling fondly at her I freed my wee poppet from prison. 'She can't go far,' was the thought.

Whoops! Bad mistake. (And if you're a parent who's used to shopping with little ones you'll be shaking your head at my naivety! Amazing what you can forget when you're not doing it all the time!)

About one minute later, carefully selected wine bottle in hand, I looked up. No toddler in sight!

For the next five minutes one increasingly worried grandmother was to be seen sprinting around the aisles. A couple of local mothers who knew the family had spotted us together and joined in the search.

First stop was the door leading to the busy carpark. A by now really anxious Robbie cased the terrain. Thank goodness - no blonde head prancing around the backs of any cars. Phew! A nearby checkout girl was alerted to continue the watch.

Back to the aisles.

And then - my heart stopped racing. Here was my little escapee, cheerily wandering toward me with a very nice-looking cheese to go with the wine. (Her foodie father was amused at the excellent taste of his youngest child!)

Reminder to self: There's no such thing as a 'quick and easy' shopping experience with small children.

The second experience happened on my doorstep.

After a busy day with clients in the city I'd diverted off the motorway to a nearby supermarket to get supplies. I'd left town before the traffic got too heavy but by the time the necessary aisle stroll, checkout queue and boot-load were completed the early evening traffic madness had erupted.

Adding up all the extra time that one 'quick' call to the supermarket had taken came to close to an extra hour on an already long day.

Finally - home. As I wearily unloaded the groceries a small truck turned into the next door driveway - a delivery from the supermarket I'd just been at! My neighbour works from home - and the only time she had invested was a few minutes on her computer and greeting the delivery man at her front door.

Guess what I've registered for now!

- NZ Herald

Robyn Pearce (known as the Time Queen) runs an international time management and productivity business, based in New Zealand. If you'd like a conference speaker, time management training for your firm, or to receive your free report 'How To Master Time In Only 90 Seconds' and ongoing time tips, check out gettingagrip.com

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Time and productivity columnist for the NZ Herald

For 22 years author and speaker Robyn Pearce (known by her clients as the Time Queen) has been sharing her experiences and knowledge about time management and productivity with countless clients and readers around the world as a keynote speaker, educator, coach and writer of 8 books and many hundreds of articles. She often appears as a subject specialist on television and radio. Robyn learnt her subject the hard way. Through the years of raising six kids, single parenthood and then a highly successful real estate career, time management was her biggest challenge. The good news is – she won, and now helps others find more time.

Read more by Robyn Pearce

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