If you’re like most people, you’ve been spending an increased amount of time indoors. It’s summertime, so in most areas, that means it’s heating up and time to run the air conditioner. Before the pandemic, you would’ve been onsite at work all week long and your kids in daycare or at a camp or a friend’s house. On weekends or evenings, you would’ve been able to escape your home for awhile and go to a movie theater, shop at a mall, hang out at a food hall – anything to use someone else’s A/C and not yours.
While you were out of your house, you could turn down or possibly turn off (depending on the outside temperature) your air conditioner and save money!
But now you can’t. Plus, you probably already have increased utility usage from using more appliances and electronics around your house 24/7 instead of just when you got home from work.
And then you got that utility bill. Ouch! It was higher than expected, at a time when penny pinching might have become a necessity for you.
So, worry and anxiety set in.
And these negative emotions stonewall our productivity.
The time management mantra that I constantly preach to clients and seminar participants is:
“Time management is all about mind management.”
After all, it’s your brain that decides what you’ll spend your waking hours doing. When your mind is clear, you become a better problem-solver, decision-maker and, therefore, a better utilizer of your time. When your brain is muddled or weighed down by worries, however, those skills take a nosedive.
So, if you don’t want your utility bills to kill your productivity, consider taking advantage of your utility company’s usage monitoring. Many utility companies offer customer portals through which you can monitor how much power you’re using – and how much it’s costing you.
In San Antonio, for example, City Public Service offers a My Energy Portal which allows customers to track their usage in increments throughout the day (in as small as 15-minute increments!) and can even show you your peak usage times. This will allow you to determine what in your house is being used when, which will give you the information you need to make any adjustments in how you operate your equipment – especially that air conditioner. You also have the option of setting an energy savings plan to make sure you stay on track with your budget. If you are a CPS customer, you can get more details here.
If you’re not a CPS customer, I encourage you to see what your energy monitoring options are with your local utility company. There are plenty of other matters to be concerned about, and getting shocked by your next utility bill shouldn’t be one of them.