Lately more often I feel need to try to be more organized and to spend that rare periods of time which I can do something for myself in a more productive way. I have to say that part of the reason is inspiration which comes from my friend Witek with whom I chat often.
As it shows in many cases hardest thing to change for a person is this person itself and this is what I’m experiencing right now :). That’s why I’ve decided to share some my thoughts about it, about time management and approach which I’m taking to help myself with it.
First important task is to get to know your enemy. For this purpose I started some time ago to use little, handy web tool called SlimTimer, which allows me to track way in which I spent my time in front of computer. At first glance, after defining some categories I started to log every single thing I was doing, however this isn’t best approach and this was a main reason (trying to be too detailed) why at first approach I failed to do this effectively. Now I get back to this tool, with better approach to categorize time in terms of time tracking. What I found very useful from this activity is knowledge not about things I spend time on, but things which consumes most of my time. And what a surprise … I found that most of my time goes to two time thieves:
- web browsing
- blog reading
Regarding time tracking process itself, after some time I have some thoughts, which maybe are not very innovative but I will share them anyway:
- tools doesn’t matter, it might be a piece of paper. It is important that one is comfortable with a tool and its usage
- tracking time using too detailed categories might lead to information bloat and being annoyed by entire process. Try to keep it at general level, unless you need to track time spent on specific task – for example for invoicing purposes.
- cheating yourself will lead you nowhere … there is no point to lie to yourself just to get better feeling when checking your results.
Next step is to do something with knowledge we have. Probably we can’t abandon all things but some might be better managed. And once again inspiration came from Witek and his 30-day-trial.com blog. I’ve decided to try to work everyday on my TO DO list and also create my DON’T DO list. Try to check what two items are at the top of DON’T DO list :)?
I will try to stick to working and entire idea and will see what results I will get. At this moment I can tell you only that when I put something on my TO DO list I feel more motivated to do this during the day to be able to mark it [DONE] in the evening. And these sometimes are really small tasks, which can be easily forgotten during the day. Probably in next 2 weeks I will be able to tell more about results.
Few pure technical things – from some time now I’m trying to stick to Inbox Zero rule and put some rules on my e-mail usage, and inspiration for this came from The 4-hour Work Week. Check it out.
And during last week I recall my old friend Workrave and installed it again on my workstation.
And here comes a main question – does all these activities going to change something? To be hones – I don’t know, ask me in a few weeks. Probably best indication that it worked will be when some of old ides going through my head will materialize in some way. Will let you know about it here probably …
Well … this is all about organizing myself … in this Saturday evening :).