Ever get that feeling that you just don’t have enough time to get things done? Whatever happened to Indian time when you had all of the sunlit day to do your work? Today, it’s 9-to-5, Monday to Friday where a whole week has to be compressed into 35 hours. Now mind you, I’m not complaining about having time off for personal things and family life, but the amount of work that has to be done increases while the amount of time stays the same.

Some things could be doubled up however, so I’ve come up with a list of things that could be done at the same time to save precious minutes of your life, leaving more to either work harder or relax longer.

First of all, when you start your day with a shower, you could brush your teeth while shampooing your hair. You could even shave at that time, to save even more precious seconds. While having breakfast, instead of having eggs and bacon and toast, you could have an egg and bacon sandwich, saving time to wash the egg yolk off your clean plate. While going to work, you could comb your still wet hair and apply any makeup while texting (which is now illegal to do while driving).

Upon arriving at work, coffee break could be combined with your cigarette if you smoke, and if you don’t smoke, you could have a second cup. Talk about smokers, who often take breaks every 15 minutes, they could just take up chewing gum to sate the craving for nicotine instead.

While working at your desk, you could keep the chatting down to a minimum, since you probably talk all day to the same people anyways. You could quietly come up with sentences long enough to say what you want to say in one text rather than sending 15 characters at a time with the usual stuff left out, like, what are you doing, how are you, what’s your name, and get to the point immediately, like, who were you with last night and why are those boots under your bed instead of in the porch? Important things like that. Sometimes, it’s just better not to deal with those issues to begin with and save time and anguish.

After conducting an informal survey of my peers on how they save time, it was interesting to note how many people brush their teeth while driving. Another group saves time by not having breakfast before going to work, preferring to have breakfast while they work instead, which I find to be self-defeating in its supposed purpose to save time.

One other way to save time is to get everyone else to do your work for you, while you concentrate on how to spend your free time. This seems to happen a lot in Cree world, but I digress from this contentious issue.

Timing is something that we as Cree don’t always comply too, but now, time is becoming more and more precious to everyone. I often like to imagine if we still used Indian time for work, getting up before the sunrise, and then working until the sun went down. I think that is how we managed to survive the long cold harsh winters, when sunlight was rare and good weather even rarer.

What we did when the sun went down often seemed to resurface during the summer months as additions to the family membership, but even that was considered as a necessary element of continuing life, whereas today, because of time again, they are often labeled as quickies instead of procreation of the species. How times have changed.