Category: Productivity

Conquer the world in 40 hours a week

I’ve been somewhat obsessed lately with the idea of “maximum sustainable progress.” Some people’s careers are not just productive but prolific. How do they structure their time to sustain productivity over the long haul? I suspect they work long-but-reasonable hours, and use those hours incredibly well. This got me thinking about what I would i… read more »

The 3 questions to ask after tracking time

I’ve been keeping track of my time since mid-April, so I’ve gotten into a groove. I write down what I’m doing, as often as I remember, which tends to be a few times per day. It’s not too hard to recall the previous few hours, and now that time-tracking is a habit, I can reconstruct a few days pretty well too. I commit certain times and activities to memory, a… read more »

When is time wasted?

Despite a major newspaper calling me a “stone-cold time-maximizing genius,” I must admit that I waste a lot of time. I’ve been recording my time continuously for about 4 months now and I can see the hours that have drifted past, never to be reclaimed. Of course, declaring time “wasted” means we need a definition of wasting time, which is trickier th… read more »

As good as things go right now

Some days are good for obvious reasons: you’re on vacation, or eating at a Michelin-starred restaurant, or celebrating a promotion. Others are more quietly good. You make space for things you enjoy, and experience a minimum of unpleasantness. Life is lived in hours, and the day’s hours are pretty decent. Monday fell in the latter category. There were m… read more »

Do kids make you more productive?

Several alert readers sent me KJ Dell’Antonia’s Motherlode post on a study finding that academic economists with 2+ children were more productive than those without kids. There was a productivity hit when the kids were little, but overall productivity, as measured in journal publications, stayed elevated despite those dips. Women with kids, incid… read more »