Time Blocking & Urgent Matrix

Time Blocking

The concept is simple. Use chunks of time. Not 30 minutes. Not a whole day. We tend to go to extremes – this is about avoiding that.

It takes a coder 45 minutes to get back on track once distracted! 45 minutes!! So every time I check my email or let that Facebook buzzz distract me – it’s another 45 minutes to get back on track!

You may not be a coder, but I bet it takes you awhile to get your head back into the frame of mind you were before the distraction.

Time blocking encourages you to choose 4(+/-) blocks a day. Now you can plan your priorities around these blocks.

For example, here’s a regular Tuesday for me:

Morning:
Block 1 Coding

Afternoon:
Block 2 Writing

Late Afternoon:
Block 3 Meetings/ phone calls

Evening:
Block 4 Family Time

TIP: Choose your most product time – for your most demanding tasks.

Email is my main method of communication with my clients – so I need to check email often. Ironically, it’s when I block it out that I can get so much more done – and am more available for my clients.

Priorities vs To Do Lists

 

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When I started this business, things were in different squares than they are now. For instance, marketing was the first important thing we had to do – it was urgent and important. Now it is important but not so urgent.

Email/phone/meetings (production) are all important but some are more urgent than others.

As a blogger, figure out which of your activities fall into these traditional business silos:

  1. marketing
  2. production
  3. finances
  4. people management
  5. research & development

Add your blogging activities into each of the squares above in the urgent & important matrix. And schedule the activities into your time blocking as appropriate.

A couple times per year at a planning session for the business, I brainstorm which items are a priority for the year within those squares. Which items must be done in innovation/ R&D? Which marketing and sales items need a boost? This has kept all other ‘opportunities’ and ‘ideas’ in their place. Some are great – and some are simply a distraction.

Decisions are a lot easier when you know what you want to accomplish and how you will do it.