As women, we typically carry many different titles and jobs throughout the day. We wear the Housekeeper Hat, the Mama Hat, the Wife Hat, the Employee Hat, the Employer Hat....... so many different things take up the hours of our day, and sometimes we can get to the end of a 24 hour period and feel like we've accomplished nothing after all the multitasking.
Everyone knows those days I'm referring to.... the ones where you stay so busy throughout the day, only to feel as though you didn't check off any items from your To Do List, or that you basically just ran in circles all day and have no idea what you truly did.
The answer to feeling more accomplished at the end of the day is not adding more things to your workload, it's simply logging your time.
The simple practice of Time Logging can not only help you see where your time goes during the day, but it can also help you gauge whether too much time is being spent on items that aren't of High Priority or Value, so you can make more time for the items that are.
So, here's the challenge!
First off, print this Time Logging Worksheet I created, no need to reinvent the wheel, here, let's just keep it simple.
Identify Your Activities Throughout The Day
From the moment you wake up in the morning, start acknowledging your daily (and non-daily) activities: Cooking Breakfast, Making Coffee, Brushing Your Teeth, Your Commute To Work, Your Morning Meeting with Your Boss or Employees, you get the idea.
Each time you identify an activity, write it on your worksheet in the activity column.
Log Your Time Spent On Each Activity
You can choose to identify activities one day and then time them the next, or do it all at once. Totally Up To You!
As you perform each of your daily activities, use a watch or the timer on your phone to time them. Once you complete an activity, write your time down in the time column.
Do this for a week to get a good average and a good feel for the activities that you do daily.
Count Your Interruptions/Distractions
During your longer tasks and activities, it's common to have interruptions and distractions. At work, a coworker can interrupt your work for a question or a project, and at home, your child waking up from a nap can cause you to drop what you're doing to get her situated before continuing.
For every interruption/distraction during your activity, leave a tick mark in the appropriate column.
But, do not stop your timer for the interruption, let it continue to run.
As you continue to log your time and your interruptions, you'll notice the activities that get prolonged dues to these distractions, and you'll be able to identify which activities may require a change of habitat or a different start time in order to perform them more efficiently.
Prioritize and Value Your Activities
This is one of the more important items in this Time Logging Practice.
Not every activity we participate in throughout the day is necessarily a Priority, just like not every one is Urgent, or even High Value to our overall mood and life.
In the last column of your worksheet, evaluate each activity with at least one of the following labels:
Priority Level- The level of importance and necessity to your day.
High Priority - HP Medium Priority - MP Low Priority - LP
Value Level- How Valuable the Activity is to You and Your Life (Your Health, Your Mood, Your Family, etc.)
High Value - HV Medium Value - MV Low Value - LP
Using this method of evaluating your activities will help you identify if your time is being allotted to the right tasks and the things that make you feel good.
Continue this practice for at least a week, and you will begin to get enough data that you can evaluate your time and begin to implement changes to be more efficient and intentional with your time and daily tasks. You may even notice that you are able to free up some time for more of the High Value items that you don't get to participate in as much now.
Make another list of the High Value Items that You'd like to make more time for and incorporate them in your schedule once you have discovered where you can create more time in your day.
I hope this helps you guys feel more efficient and intentional with your days, and that you feel more accomplished at the end of your day with this simple practice.
I'd love to hear what you all are able to make more time for after putting this into action! Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org!
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