Master Your Day with Time Blocking: A Busy Woman's Guide to Productivity
Updated: Sep 14
Do you ever feel like there's just not enough time in the day to accomplish everything you want to do? Maybe you find yourself constantly distracted by social media or other tasks that steal away precious hours. If this sounds like you, it might be time to try time blocking. In this post, we'll explore what time blocking is, its origin, why it's beneficial, and how to get started with creating a time blocked calendar.
What is Time Blocking?
Time blocking is a productivity technique that involves dividing your day into distinct chunks of time, each dedicated to a specific task or activity. By creating a schedule that accounts for your entire day, you'll have a clear understanding of how much time you have available for each task, which can help you prioritize and focus on what's most important.
Origin of Time Blocking
The concept of time blocking can be traced back to the early 1900s, when a man named Ivy Lee helped Charles Schwab, a steel magnate, increase his productivity. Lee's advice was to write down the six most important tasks for the day and focus on completing them one at a time, in order of importance.
The Ivy Lee Method
During his 15 minutes with each executive, Ivy Lee explained his simple daily routine for achieving peak productivity:
At the end of each work day, write down the six most important things you need to accomplish tomorrow. Do not write down more than six tasks.
Prioritize those six items in order of their true importance.
When you arrive tomorrow, concentrate only on the first task. Work until the first task is finished before moving on to the second task.
Approach the rest of your list in the same fashion. At the end of the day, move any unfinished items to a new list of six tasks for the following day.
Repeat this process every working day.
This approach later evolved into time blocking, where you allocate specific blocks of time for each task.
Who Should Use Time Blocking?
Time blocking can be beneficial for anyone looking to improve their productivity and manage their time more effectively. It's particularly useful for busy individuals, such as working moms, students, entrepreneurs, and anyone juggling multiple responsibilities. If you struggle with staying focused or feel like there's just not enough time in the day, time blocking can help you prioritize and make the most of your time.
Why is Time Blocking Beneficial?
Time blocking is an effective way to stay focused and get more done in less time. Here are a few of the many benefits:
Increased productivity: By scheduling your day in advance, you'll be less likely to waste time on distractions or unimportant tasks.
Better time management: Time blocking helps you make the most of your day by allocating time for each task, ensuring you have enough time for everything you need to do.
Reduced stress: When you have a clear plan for the day, you'll feel less overwhelmed and more in control.
How to Time Block Your Calendar
Now that you understand the benefits of time blocking and who should use it, let's dive into how to create a time blocked calendar:
Start by identifying your top priorities for the day or week. These might include work tasks, personal projects, or appointments.
Allocate time slots for each task, being sure to schedule in breaks and time for self-care. For example, you might set aside an hour in the morning for a workout, followed by a two-hour block for work, then a half-hour break for lunch, and so on.
Be realistic with your time estimates. Don't try to cram too many tasks into one day, or you'll end up feeling overwhelmed and stressed.
Use a digital calendar or planner to keep track of your time blocks. This will make it easy to see your schedule at a glance and make adjustments as needed.
Stick to your schedule as much as possible, but be flexible when necessary. Life happens, and sometimes you'll need to shift your schedule around to accommodate unexpected events or changes.
Overall, time blocking can be an effective way to improve productivity and manage your time more effectively. By creating a schedule that accounts for your entire day, you'll be able to stay focused and accomplish more in less time. So why not give it a try and see how it works for you? Whether you're a busy working mom, a student, an entrepreneur, or just someone looking to make the most of their time, time blocking can be a helpful tool to add to your productivity arsenal. Remember to be patient with yourself as you start implementing time blocking into your routine. It may take a little bit of trial and error to find the right balance that works for you.
In conclusion, time blocking is a simple yet powerful productivity technique that can help you make the most of your time and accomplish your goals. By dedicating specific blocks of time to each task, you'll be able to stay focused, prioritize your tasks, and achieve greater productivity. Give it a try and see how much more you can accomplish! xoxo,