Happy New Year! Podcasts, goals, etc.

Welcome to 2018! Well, I guess we are a few days in already, but I've been traveling, so better late than never. Just a few quick notes:

The newest podcast episode -- the baby "mini-sode" -- is live! Sarah and I discuss the birth of her daughter, and how things are going so far. So far so good!

Also, I was a guest on one of my favorite podcasts, What Should I Read Next? Every week, Anne Bogel of Modern Mrs. Darcy does some literary match-making for one guest. We discussed making time to read (the words supply and demand came up a lot -- listen to the episode and see what I mean!) and then she selected some books for me. Of her suggestions, I have so far read two. I'll do write-ups later, since I don't want to spoil the surprise! I'm looking forward to trying the others over the next few weeks. Being a guest on WSIRN was a fun experience, and I enjoyed listening to the podcast as much as I enjoyed the conversation when we recorded. So please give it a listen.

Finally, I'll be hosting another time-tracking challenge next week. Do you want to spend your time better in 2018? The first step is figuring out where the time is going now. If you'd like the accountability of knowing other people are tracking along with you, then sign up here for motivational emails.

In the meantime...stay warm! Brrr....

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6 Responses to Happy New Year! Podcasts, goals, etc.


  1. Tana says:

    I did the time tracking challenge last fall and continued until we travelled for Christmas. At that point I was sort of frustrated with it and knew I needed to change up my categories. For instance, time in the car. If I’m with my kids, we have an audiobook on. If I’m by myself, a podcast or book I want to listen to. Previously that would have been just driving but now the former would be social time (friends/family) and the latter would be personal time. Then along the lines of Deep Work, I use a dark shade if it is focused time or a lighter if I’m multi-tasking (as in these two examples). I made this change last week and now the time tracking is so much more helpful (though I did gain insights from it before). I’m looking forward to continuing this habit in the new year.

    • @Tana – thanks for letting us know your strategies for making time tracking more productive! I agree that figuring out categories can, at times, be frustrating. It really doesn’t have to be exact, but figuring out how to categorize certain bits of time can go a long way toward making you feel like you’re making the right changes. I agree that chatting with kids in the car is a different thing from listening to an audio book in the car, is different from sitting there stewing about traffic.

    • Jennifer says:

      I have been using your time tracking method and it has really helped my productivity and focus – especially in seeing where my time is actually going and how long it takes me to do things. Thank you! @Tana I am curious what “Dark Shade” is. I like the idea of also having a color-coded way of seeing the different qualities of work time because I need to spend a lot of time on dissertation work and it is too easy for admin, emails and other less brain-intensive projects to take up my time, especially if I am tired.

      • Jennifer says:

        Oops – I meant _Dark Work_!

      • @Jennifer- so glad you are finding time-tracking useful! It really is enlightening to see where the time goes. A reasonable number of people who send me their time logs do wind up color-coding for different categories. I think some people are more visual than others, and the different colors really help them get a picture of their lives. I am not technically competent enough to figure out how to do colors in excel (I kid you not) so…no color-coding for me.

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