Look at Inefficiencies
If you are doing something that takes an unnecessarily large amount of time, you are probably doing things within that task that don’t need to be done. For example, if you were a baseball player and your way of hitting the ball included doing a push-up between the release of the pitch and the swing, you would never meet the ball. Eliminating the wasted motion will speed everything up.
Look at Ineffectiveness
This one takes more time, but sometimes they are glaringly obvious to those around us. Ask. For example, if you don’t need to produce a weekly status report but you spend an hour every week doing so, this is ineffective. Asking the person you are sending the report to would confirm its effectiveness.
Having just done all my holiday cards in an hour (50+), I can vouch for using technology to automate what can be. Printing address labels is much faster than addressing cards by hand. And the post office likes it better, too.
Make complete entries
When you write something down, write down enough information so that you don’t spend time and energy later trying to decipher cryptic notations. For example, “print article on drying herbs” is better than “print article”.
Think Things Through
If you think things through, you will see a path through. This is much simpler than randomly moving in all directions until you stumble onto what you are supposed to be doing. Taking time to think allows you to identify inefficiencies, ineffectiveness, and points for automation.