About a year ago, I bought 100 stamps from Costco. Relative to the small endeavor of getting stamps, that purchase has saved me an incredible amount of time and hassle.
I would have had to buy a book of stamps 5 times. If I bought stamps individually – as I commonly did before – I would had to make at least 15 transactions.
That’s a significant amount of time driving and waiting in line besides the mental toll of having yet another thing on your checklist (your mind can only hold so much at one time).
Buying stamps is just one micro task among dozens we face but the point is you can increase your operational efficiency simply by buying in bulk.
Also about a year ago, I purchased 5 pairs of the same running shoe.
Every year prior, I had bought running shoes one pair at a time. I went to one or more stores, many times on different days and I tried on a bunch of shoes. I’m very specific about my shoes so the process might take up to a week.
In other words, buying running shoes was a complete mess.
In 2014, I found some Brooks running shoes that fit me really well so I decided to buy 4 additional pairs online so I wouldn’t have to worry about running shoes for a long time.
Again, this purchase purchase has netted me a huge time savings. Considering I may have spent 8 total hours looking for a pair of shoes in the past, it’s easy to believe buying in bulk saved me 16 or so hours of shoe hunting.
There are two primary factors here: 1) how much time you spend on each purchase and 2) the frequency at which you purchase.
Stamps and shoes are inverses of each other but both were easily worth eliminating because the total time was significant both in absolute and relative terms and elimination was easy to do.