This article first appeared in the Eduk8me newsletter. Be sure to subscribe to be the first to get articles such as this.
On the school/work front, I’m trying a new productivity technique. I’ve always had a To Do list, and I would mark things with @today for items that needed to be completed that day. A few weeks ago while reading Indistractable, a line stood out for me. If you don’t schedule your time, someone will schedule it for you. With that in mind, I’ve now started to schedule my entire day and it’s been a game changer for me. In Google Calendar, I have several repeating events that happen every day. And then, in the empty times, I schedule my To Do tasks.
When a task is scheduled, it helps put me in the mindset of completing the task, instead of dreading the task. Scheduling tasks also gives me a chance to document what I did. In the event description field I will write down what I did to complete the task.
There are a couple of downsides. If an emergency happens or I’m delayed, I have to then reschedule a bunch of events in Google Calendar. This is a pain, Google Calendar doesn’t make that easy. Another downside is that there are limited times in the future for others to schedule meetings with me. Actually, that’s more of a downside for them, not me. Less meetings means more happiness.
Time is a resource that is very limited and you can’t make more. Although scheduling tasks doesn’t make time, it does give me a peace of mind. I’m not as stressed with the backlog of work. The calendar approach also gives me a record and documentation for the work I’ve done. When I can’t remember when something was done or how I did it, I can search the calendar and get that information.
What is your favorite productivity tip?