One of the classes in the Work of Art Series I’m taking was on Time Management. In it, the facilitator talked about tracking your week. A while back, I heard a podcast with the author of 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think in which she also advocates for time tracking. I worked at a company once where we tracked our time per project (similar to how lawyers do for billing) just to be sure we were charging clients accurately. We weren’t, and nothing was ever done about it, so, since then, I’ve been a little dismissive of time tracking. But I decided to give it a shot.
Initially I was going to go for two full weeks, but after five days I realized I had a lot of good data, and I stopped on day 11. (Partially because I was sick and all I was tracking was laying on the couch.)
Here’s some of what I learned:
- I sleep an average of 9 hours a day. I feel like this number is slightly skewed because I spent two of those days at my parents house where I got to sleep until 9:30, and I was sick, but I’m actually glad to see it, because 9 hours is, I think, my sweet spot. Seeing that I was getting it, and getting as much done as I did, makes me feel good.
- I only spend an average of 1.5 hours a day watching TV. I’m okay with that.
- I also averaged 1.5 hours a day on Cooking/Eating, Reading Fiction, Family Time and Kid time.
- I only spend 35 min a day or so on Email/Facebook/Social Media. Hallelujah. Sometimes it feels like a lot more. *Caveat: If I was on Facebook while watching TV, I usually counted it as TV time. Because what’s the point in splitting hairs when both of the things are mind-numbing?
- I was also happy with the amount of time I spent writing and working on other “business” items. There was a good balance.
- I need to spend more time in the following areas: Time with Chris (hubby), Art/Journaling, and Gym.
Here’s my whole Time Tracker.
Laura Vanderkam’s Website has more time management resources in the right hand column.
Have you ever done a time tracker? What did you learn?