3/5/18
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Running Out of Time?

Feeling swamped? 

Like you're running in circles and can't fit everything into a day?

Good news!


We have now made days 27 hours!
Kidding.

But, we do have some awesome perspective on managing your time. Read below 👇🏼👇🏼👇🏼__________________________________________________________________________

Every year we swear to ourselves that this is the year that we are going to get our ducks in a row and make this our best year yet.  We swear that we will be more productive, get healthier, be a better person, and be the best version of ourselves we can be but how long does this actually last?  

Unfortunately for most, a few weeks into the New Year resolutions are forgotten about and before you know it you are repeating the things of last year that you swore to get rid of.  What may be a factor in this despite our good intentions?

More often than not it is due to time and task management constraints.  There is only so much time in a day and we all have different priorities that need to get done. One thing that can help us find the time to do what we want and help us with task management: time blocking!

The essence of time blocking is taking your to-do list and then assigning those tasks a specific time to get done.  You literally plan out your whole day from the time you wake up to the time you go to bed.  

I already know what you are thinking,
“But how am I supposed to know everything that I will run into on any given day?!”, or “what if something unexpected pops up, there is no way I can predict these things?!” 

Reality is we will never be able to predict things happening, but what we can do is set ourselves up for success by controlling what it is that we can control.

Start either the night before or first thing in the morning.  
Start with the easy things; waking up, showering, eating breakfast, work, eating lunch, drive times, etc.  Then start to fill in the other tasks that need to happen for the day; hockey practice, working out, laundry, walking the dog, playing outside with the kids, etc.  What this does is keep you on task with decided time slots.  

Previously you would be in the middle of completing some paperwork, then halfway through you remember that you needed to call the bank so you stop doing the paperwork to call the bank before you forget.
Then after getting off the phone with the bank you remember something else that had to get done.  
This goes on and on and things get dropped or left incomplete.  

With time blocking, if you’re completing some paperwork but remember that you have to call the bank, you can schedule a call to the bank in some free time or transition time you have available for the rest of the day allowing you to focus on the task at hand.

How we did it:

Since I’ve started time blocking both my schedule and our family schedule, we are more efficient and getting way more accomplished.  We are able to find out about an event and lookup if we are available or if we will have any conflicts and respond in a timely manner.  We have more peace of mind when it comes to knowing where we have to be when we have to be there and not allowing ourselves to forget about tasks and events.

I created us a family google account that allows us to use the same calendar to stay up to date with each of our own events and family events.  

What we like:
it is easy to use, syncs between all of our devices, allows us to add start/end times, addresses or general locations, notifications or reminders, and quick descriptions. 

We started by entering in some basic recurring tasks, things like: waking up, getting ready, eating breakfast, work hours, working out, travel times, meal prepping, etc., basically anything that happens at the same time daily, weekly, or monthly.  Then as things come up such as birthdays, medical appointments, CrossFit competitions, dinners, hockey games, etc., we are able to add these things as soon as we find out about them.

Everyone works differently and has a system that works best for them.  What works amazing for you, may not work for us and vise versa.  Find what works for you and your goals and stick with it!

Here are some tips to help set you up for success

  • Setup a google calendar that syncs with your phone to allow yourself to stay up to date.
  • Take this further and create a family google calendar and login to it on all of the family mobile devices so that everyone stays up to date.
  • Take 10-15 minutes every evening or first thing in the morning and plan out your next day at the minimum, plan further days as tasks and priorities become known.
  • Each day will come with a new set of priorities; new events will pop up that require your time.  As these become known schedule them in your calendar right away then get back to the task at hand.
  • Use recurring blocks for recurring tasks.
  • If you plan on working out on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 4:00pm every week set a recurring event to get that time blocked in your schedule.
  • Be generous when scheduling time for your tasks, especially when booking back to back events.
  • If you are out doing your grocery shopping and run into an old friend from college if you end up chatting for some time, it won’t throw off your schedule.

Jordan Walling

Coach - duluth