I’m keeping a work time log this week so I can see where my time goes (keeping a work time log is Week 1’s assignment in the #SuccessatWork challenge).
I’m noticing a few things. First, it takes me a while to ease back into work after every break. I check my email, I follow links, I see what’s going on at Twitter. It’s not out-of-control in terms of time, but I need to be aware of it. If every break involves an easing in, it may be better to take fewer, longer breaks to avoid losing time on re-entry.
Second, not only do I have more focused times of the day (mornings, 8-11 a.m.), I have more focused days of the week. Monday I hit the ground running. By Wednesday, I’m often sputtering. These are related, of course — I may tackle my big goals on Monday, and thus have less to do by Wednesday. But again, it’s good to be aware of it. If there’s something I want to do, I should schedule it for Monday, not Thursday. Thursday may be a better day for calls, meetings, and other things that don’t require the laser focus that writing does.
Third, having my iPhone with me changes how I experience time. I was very proud of myself the other morning when I woke up at 6:30 with my toddler, and did not turn on my phone until 8:45. Early mornings in my house can be long, but checking my phone doesn’t actually make them go faster. It just makes them more stressful.
Fourth, I’m happy with the amount of “work reading” time I’m putting in, but I can probably even do more of this. Right now, I feel guilty about reading during work hours, and so I tend to do it at night. But if I’m reading something for work — like analyzing the structure of a longer magazine piece to see how other people tackle these things — there’s no reason I can’t do it during my regular work day.
What are you learning from minding your hours?
In other news: A number of home/finance/food bloggers (like The Frugal Girl and Money Saving Mom) are running an “Ultimate Homemaking eBook Bundle” sale, where you get 100 ebooks for about $30. I bought the bundle partly to understand more of how people are approaching ebooks — the writing, the selling, what works and what doesn’t. Seeing 100 ebooks in one fell swoop has allowed me to do quite a comparison!
Forbes’ Laura Shin writes about “The 7 Ways Successful People Approach Their Work” — highlighting What the Most Successful People Do at Work.
Over at Fortune, Katherine Reynolds Lewis writes her side of the story about our accountability partner arrangement. My version of the tale ran here.
The Deliberate Reader reviews my book. She likes it, but thinks it ends abruptly. Note to self: work on transitions!
The paperback of All the Money in the World will be out May 28! Check out the new cover here.
Photo courtesy flickr user SMugridge