… to defeat procrastination.
Recently I found myself with a lot of new projects and too many tasks to fit in my schedule. To avoid feeling overwhelmed or burned out, I came to the conclusion that I had to start managing my time in a smarter way; and that’s when Time Blocking appeared. If you have ready any interview about how a certain successful person works, chances are they mentioned this practice. Personally, I’ve never used my calendar as a management tool before, but I found that Time Blocking not only helps you organize your time better, but you’ll learn how exactly you are spending your day.
So what is Time Blocking?
Time Blocking is a time management method that aims to schedule out everything in your workday, in order to better manage your time. It’s about diving your day into controlled units of time and scheduling them for specific tasks, from projects to meetings to any other work activity.
Time Blocking is essentially designing your day in an efficient way, by arranging your tasks into the hours of the day (or blocks of time) you have available. Instead of simply having a to-do list, you have now a tool that can help you visualize your day in a controlled and proactive way.
And how can I do that?
To time block effectively, the first thing you need to do is to block off in a calendar your actual workday, which means the hours you are actually working. Doesn’t matter if you are using an app, a physical planner or a calendar, the important thing is to map out your day. From that, divide your workday into select specific time slots; it can be sets of 2 hours, 1 hour or even 30 minutes. Consider your own working preferences and rhythm, not forgetting breaks. This will help you visualize when you’ll be able to fit your tasks.
The next step is to look at your to-do list and figure out your daily tasks. Fill out those previously designed times with your tasks. And once you planned out everything, you can now work on the tasks during the prescribed time block and try to complete them during that set.
The beauty of this method is that it can work for anyone since it can be easily be adjusted to one’s needs. But it can definitely require some practice and a little flexibility from your side. Chances are you’ll need to change how you are diving your day and tasks several times. But don’t be afraid to revise your plan, even during the day. The time slots system makes it easier for you to move tasks around.
Is it the Ultimate Scheduling Tool?
Time Blocking is a type of scheduling that can help you manage your time far better. Instead of working against the clock to finish everything, you are actually using the time to your advantage by focusing on a task at a certain period slot.
Using Time Blocking will help you work free of distractions since you have scheduled limited time that requires your focus. By dedicating a specific amount of time for one single task, your mind doesn’t wonder about other tasks. You’ll be able to stay on track, without wasting time switching tasks or even figuring out what to work on next.
To practice Time Blocking strickly, your entire day needs to be scheduled to help you manage your time more effectively. Although this may seem too constraining and a bit overwhelming at first, you’ll find that by not wasting or underutilizing your hours, you’ll actually have more free time. So in conclusion: if you set time to get things done, it will help you to get more done, which ultimately will make you feel less anxious and stress.