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Take Back Your Time: Add Hours to Your Day

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Tired of time bandits stealing your life minute by minute? These time-savers will help you regain control.

Streamline Your Life

Between deadlines, kickboxing class, and your best friend's latest crisis, you've barely got a moment to spare. We consulted with Laura Sari Geduldig, a life coach in the San Francisco Bay area, and Caroline Righton, author of The Life Audit, for tips on how to shave minutes off everyday activities. Find your top time-suckers below, and get ready to reclaim your day (not to mention your life).

Are you really ready to make a change? Sign up for our 8-week "You Can Do It" makeover plan, and we'll e-mail you easy-to-follow guides every week to help you Take Back Your Time!

The Time Suck: Staying in the know on all the celebrity gossip and political chatter by surfing dozens of blogs

The Save: Register with bloglines.com to track all your must-read blogs and e-newsletters on one home page.

The Time Suck: Remembering your password for every bank, store, and cell-phone Web site you use

The Save: The most secure, least hackable passwords are those that contain 15 random letters and numbers. But who wants to memorize all that? Surprisingly, according to Microsoft security experts, it's better to write down all your passwords in a safe, protected place than it is to use a password manager or other online tool. Just make sure you don't label it My Computer Passcode in big block letters!

The Time Suck: Cooling your heels (among other regions) in a paper gown at the doctor's office

The Save: Book the first appointment of the day so you get to your doc before patients pile up, and come in the middle of the week when things tend to be calmer, says Larry S. Fields, MD, president of the American Academy of Family Physicians. If you're a new patient, Dr. Field advises getting (and filling out) all the forms pre-appointment. "Many doctors have them in electronic form, so you can do it via e-mail or the Web," he explains.

The Time Suck: Running all over town doing errands

The Save: Cluster your stops with high-tech helpers like mapquest.com or Microsoft's Streets & Trips software, which can plan the best route. Or log on to www.errandservicesportal.com to find a personal concierge service in your area. They can take your dog to be groomed, get your eyeglasses repaired, or even shop for your cousin's bridal-shower gift.

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