2011 is for me a year of change. I’m trying to change a few things in my life to improve myself. One of those is the number of hours that I work. Before Christmas, using RescueTime, I found I was tracking an average of 120 hours a week working… that’s 18 hours a day for 7 days a week. That is just insane, but I did it because I had to… no – not a good reason at all.
Over Christmas, I’ve taken time to look at the things I do and try to see what / how I can do things differently. One of the things I’m doing now is to outsource my transportation to work. No – I’m not talking about some chauffeur driven car or anything flash like that, I’m talking about using public transport – more specifically the train to get to the office. You see – I work 4 days of my week in North Sydney – that’s about 35km from home. If I drive in, it can take me an hour or more depending on traffic. Add to that the fact that they have just started some major roadworks on the M2 Freeway which is the main road I user to get there and you can see I will end up spending even more time in my commute to the office each day.
Anyway – the cost of the train is cheaper, and the stations I get on and off at are at either ends of the line, so I normally get a seat too. Add to that the journey is a fairly constant 1hour and 5 minutes with SOMEONE ELSE driving means I can actually get some work done in solitude… Ok – so I’ve taken 2 hours of time that was previously wasted in driving myself and moved it over to potential work time. Cool – that gives me the ability to NOT work as much at home now. In fact more specifically I’ve now got an hour in the morning before I leave to do some fitness or just sleep in a little. I also have an hour extra in the evening when I get home that I can just switch off and relax. So – outsourcing my transport so far is working for me – we’ll see how long it works and what issues I have over the coming months
Oh – I wrote this while I was on the train too ad also posted it – gotta love technology.
Have you tried to look at things from a different angle? Why not? What successes have you had? Share them please!
Robert Crane says
Like you say the first step in managing your time is to track via RescueTime or ManicTime. The next thing is to analyse exactly where your time is spent. It is important to use it effectively FIRST then efficiently. Many people are simply wasting their time on stuff that shouldn’t have a high priority. Tip is that the stuff that has the higher priority is generally the stuff you procrastinate about. Solution, do it first.
It is also important to actually schedule ‘downtime’ as well planning space. Create a calendar appointment, block it out turn off the phone, close your email and relax.
Another tip is to batch up common jobs and do it in a single block rather than fragmented throughout the week. For example maybe Monday morning 9-11 is when you do your accounts.
Overall I’d say you should be striving to do less, not add more to your plate. Delegate, prioritize or ignore should be your mantra but at the end of the day it is what works for you and you aren’t going to know until you want more free time. Remember you can get more of everything except time so treat with respect and value it above all else.
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