In the midst of chaos, one can always find a respite and a way to break through the noise to get things done. Oftentimes, many people struggle when their situations, circumstances and routines suddenly change. They procrastinate and yearn for the “good old days” when they knew what to do, where to go, when to do things, and how to do them.
Some would call this time management – knowing how to best schedule your day in your calendar so you are punctual and show up on time for the appointments, meetings, events and dinners you plan with others.
Time management is just that: management of your time and where you are going to be when.
There is a completely different approach to planning the time when you will not be meeting with others, conducting or attending appointments or events, or sitting at dinner.
Time is finite. You only get 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. There are 168 hours in a week, and 8,376 hours in a year. You don’t get any more – and you don’t get any less.
How are you spending your “life time”?
When you begin to view time as an asset, assigning tasks to the time you want to spend on them – or time blocking – will lead you to a whole new way of instantly becoming more productive!
Think of it this way: time management is managing your schedule or calendar – the context of your time. Time blocking is all about the content – what you are going to do during that time and how it will benefit you by completing tasks you want to get done and or taking excellent care of your body so you can do, be and enjoy more of your life.
Here are 10 ways time blocking will change the game for you:
- Identify the top three tasks you want to accomplish each day. Designate a block of time in your calendar when you will work on each task, not while you are talking with someone else and not while you’re commuting. When you slow down and stop the rest of your world so you can focus your attention on one goal or task at a time, you will make more progress on it.
- Decide what type of energy or fuel you are going to bring to the time you are going to spend on your tasks. The intention you set for the time you are blocking is just as important as the goals you set.
- Clarity is a big key to getting things done. Instead of cluttering your morning or afternoon work time with ten tasks, choose fewer goals and dive deeper into them so you can get them done.
- Time blocking is a form of self-care. It allows you to set aside time for you. It is how you make sure what you do during the time you schedule is meaningful for you – and full of meaning! Choose to only put those tasks and goals in your calendar that will bring you joy.
- Time blocking is a commitment, not just of your time but what you are going to do with that time. It is a commitment – to yourself – to hold yourself accountable to what you said you wanted to do. Whether you time block your fun, or time block the work that requires your undivided attention and deepest concentration, or you time block your relationships, you train others to respect your commitment – to yourself and others.
- When you use time blocking for work or writing, breaking down the tasks you have or the scenes or pages or chapters you’re writing can simplify what you have to focus on so you can actually get something done. No more multitasking. Those days are over. By identifying a specific time for you to work or write, you will accelerate your ability to be productive in a shorter period of time.
- Fitness and sports require time blocking to expedite your success. Time management is making sure you get to the class, gym or field on time. Time blocking is what you are going to do and get done during the time you scheduled like take a yoga or Zumba class, lift weights on the circuit, complete a spin class, or play a complete 9 innings on your baseball team.
- Body care is a critical area where time blocking is essential. When you time block your acupuncture, physical therapy, massage, chiropractic care, and hair and nail appointments, don’t just schedule them. Time block. Think about nothing but allowing yourself to relax and receive the treatment. When you allow yourself to benefit from the treatment by relaxing into it, you will rejuvenate yourself at more levels so you are fresh for the next block of time.
- Meditation and mindfulness practices require time blocking. This is something you don’t want to do in conjunction with anything else. This is your time to get quiet, listen to your body and life, and just be alive. Time blocking these practices will help you find more inner peace and reduce stress.
- Time blocking is not just for you; it sets a boundary for everyone else. This is your time to get what you want done, without being interrupted by your children (can’t your spouse take them for a few hours?), your pet (can’t someone else walk the dog or feed the cat?), your housecleaning (do you really need to do the laundry now?), or other people trying to reach you (do you really need to take that phone call or answer that email?) Is it possible that all of these things can wait a few hours for your attention?
Time blocking is the runway to the life you imagine. Use it to its fullest experience so you can get more done in less time with more joy.