Have you ever heard of time blocking? It is a secret to success, with the potential to transform your life. Let me explain.
Have you ever wanted to accomplish a certain task: cook more regularly, launch an internet business, workout more consistently, spend more time with your kids, go back to school, get caught up on your reading, etc., but you just don’t have the time…because of life’s other responsibilities…
This is where time blocking comes to the rescue. Time blocking is the simple process of blocking a certain amount of time, such as one hour everyday, (or on certain days) to achieve a specific task.
This is not the same as having something on your calendar at ¨3:00pm¨ that you need to accomplish. What I’m referring to when I talk about “time blocking,” is a slot of time that is set apart for an activity, and that time slot is sacred, never to be adjusted.
During this time block, whatever item has been slated to be accomplished is given the highest priority, preeminence over everything else that you have going on.
Let’s say you decide to time block an hour to ¨workout:¨ let’s also say that you choose to block this time from noon until 1:00 p.m. everyday. During this hour, you should let nothing interfere with your workout, and you should let everyone know that you workout at noon daily; whether you’re on vacation, visiting a friend’s house, whether it’s raining, snowing, burning hot, or freezing cold, that time has been set apart for working out, and nothing gets in the way of it (except in the most extreme of circumstances).
The key to time blocking is to keep it holy and sacred, nothing obstructs, hinders, impedes, delays, hampers or affects what you have set apart to accomplish during that time slot.
5 Things You Should Know About Time Blocking:
1. How Much Time to Block?
You probably want to begin by blocking off one hour a day to perform a certain task that you’ve been desiring to do. Maybe you want to write a book, maybe you want to read a book, if you dedicate one hour a day to that task you will make significant strides towards the accomplishment of your goal. Everyone has an hour that they can carve out of their day to do something that is meaningful, special and valuable.
2. What Type of Item Should I Block?
You should block an item that is a top priority in your life, but one that you seem to keep putting off.
What priority have you been putting off that has the potential to transform your life, if you dedicated one hour a day to accomplishing it? Start there.
3. When Should You Block?
In short, a time that works best for your schedule. The mornings are often a great time because you can usually get up one hour earlier and complete the task, and then you have the joyous feeling of accomplishment for the rest of the day. As the saying goes, “If it must be done, it must be done first.” If it’s done first, you don’t risk some other impending task taking precedence.
Another question you might ask is, ¨Should you time block everyday?¨
And the answer of course is, it depends. However, I recommend seven days a week, if possible: The same time Monday – Friday, and then you can adjust the times on the weekend (or choose not to complete the activity on the weekend).
Why every day or five days a week?
Because it makes the habit of performing the task that much easier to form. The objective is to create the habit of working towards a key goal for one hour a day, and eventually the “habit” of performing the task will take over.
Why is forming the habit important?
Because surely you will be excited to perform the task on certain days, but without doubt on certain days you will not be excited, that’s when the habit of performing the task is needed.
4. How Many Time Blocks Should You Have?
You can begin with time blocking one critical task, and then once you master that task, you can move on to a second task. You should probably keep your time blocking limited to your top one to three priorities. You may develop one sacred hour to workout, one sacred hour to meditate, and one sacred hour to spend with your children. Someone else may have one sacred hour to work on their internet business, one sacred hour to write a book, and one sacred hour to read a book.
5. The Benefits and The Cost
Ahhh…the benefits. When you’re done with your time blocking activity you will feel great! Finally, you’re making progress towards a goal that you have been putting off for years. You’re evolving.
What is the cost? What do you have to give up for such a great productivity tool? There’s a price for everything right? What you give up is one less hour of wasting time on a less valuable task. That’s about it.
When your ¨time block¨ for an activity ends for the day, be sure to stop performing that activity; this way you’ll be excited about picking up where you left off on the following day. It’s easy to get caught up in the task when you’re finally making progress, so commit to your start time and end time (not that you won’t have to adjust a few minutes here or there on occasion, but) as a general rule you want to begin and end the task at the same time every day.
A Personal Example
I have time blocked my workouts, I workout every day for two hours, and I don’t let anything interfere with that task, not vacation, not family visiting, nothing, that time is sacred and set apart to me. Because I have this ¨time blocked¨ activity, I have made tremendous gains in the area of fitness over the years, it’s a rare day when someone doesn’t comment on how fit I am. People associate me with fitness, all because of my commitment to this particular time block.
What will people associate you with, your time blocks determine how people see you. What do you want to be known for?
My time blocks have changed my life, and when you time block, it will change your life as well.
Photo Cred: ActivateGroupInc.com