Time blocking is an art form! For me, it is a tool I use on my calendar to stay organized. It can be used on a Google calendar or on a day planner. This really depends on which calendar will work best for you. Try not to use more than one calendar or it will really get you messed up! So here’s a brief description of how to time block:
Do you hear yourself saying, “I should have done that?”, “I should have worked out more this week”, “I should have run that errand!”, “I never get a chance to read anymore!” The only way things like this are going to get done is if you time block them on your calendar. Let’s say you want to work out three times a week. You have to determine if this is a realistic goal FOR YOU! If so, then will you more likely work out in the morning or the evening? If the answer is the morning, then make a calendar entry for 7 am – 8 am on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and write, highlight or code the color as pink.
Here are some other colored activities to think about when time blocking:
Pink = Personal time (dates with hubby, kids or friends, personal grooming, golf, movies, crafts, reading)
Yellow = Networking, Cold Calling, Phone Calls, etc.
Blue = Education, Workshops, Reading, and so on
Purple = Team or Family Activities
Green = The best one! Money making activities such as client appointments, proposals, pitches, speaking engagements and so forth.
Here are some tips on how to get this new time blocking habit started:
- Schedule EVERYTHING at first until you get into a better habit of planning ahead. Remember it takes 21 days to form a new habit!
- Add recurring meetings or appointments 1st
- Add personal time 2nd and be committed to not blowing yourself off!
- Add revenue generating appointments 3rd – believe me, you won’t miss these appointments, and if you do, well shame on you! Also, if you need 5 client appointments a week, block them off so you don’t get yourself to busy to take those clients when they show up. Face it, some people are just last minute people.
- Schedule networking activities next and try to keep a good balance. Don’t network yourself to death, but also don’t blow off networking because you need to keep your pipeline full. 2-3 networking meetings a week works well as an average.
- Schedule education and other activities last. If there’s a deadline for your CE courses, then schedule them in your calendar months in advance so you are not rushing to get things done at the last minute.
A few more helpful tips:
- Schedule the things that take the most energy or brain power when you are at your highest energy level. If you are a morning person, schedule tedious things for the morning and easier stuff in the afternoon.
- Put the things you are procrastinating about on the calendar first and get them knocked out. You will feel better once these tasks are accomplished and you’ll have less mind clutter.
- Pay attention to what’s not working for you and fix it.
- Leave time before meetings to prepare and drive with traffic and leave time after meetings to process, take notes, catch up on phone calls, etc.
- Schedule enough time in between for meals or snacks, even if it’s a quick bite and try not to eat in the car while driving. At least pull over at a nice park for 15 minutes and listen to some music.
If you can start planning your calendar ahead, you will be less reactive and more PROACTIVE and become less stressed. Hope these tips help, please call if you have any questions or if would like me to hold a workshop at your office on time blocking.
Command Your Clutter is a professional organizer providing services in Clearwater, PalmHarbor, Brandon, Lithia, Apollo Beach and Tampa. For more information, go to our web site www.CommandYourClutter.com
or call (727) 420-1746.