Stephen Altrogge has a helpful post introducing time blocking. Stephen begins,
Most people use their calendars reactively, meaning that they put things on their calendars as they come up. Someone wants to grab coffee? On the calendar. The boss calls a meeting? On the calendar. A conference call with the publishing team? On the calendar.
The problem with this approach is that it can lead to the day getting very chopped up, which then makes it difficult to get things done which require in-depth thinking. If you’re constantly interrupted by meetings, phone calls, and emails, it’s tough to make progress on meaningful tasks.
Enter time blocking.
Some of the key steps Stephen outlines for time blocking are to:
- Set your priorities.
- Create deep work blocks.
- Add shallow work and reactive blocks.
- Assign specific tasks to time blocks.
Stephen also recommends that, when time blocking, you “overestimate the time it will take you to complete tasks”—since we have a tendency to do just the opposite—and “create an overflow day if you find yourself constantly falling behind in your schedule.”
For the balance of Stephen’s discussion, see his original post on the Freedom blog.
For more about time blocking, see this blog post series.