Any given day can seem quite long (ask me about yesterday from 5:45 a.m. to 8:45 a.m.!). And yet our whole lives are just a blip in the span of the universe. According to Oliver Burkeman, we might live for Four Thousand Weeks or so. Knowing that, how should we approach our time?
Oliver and I explore these questions and more on this week’s episode of Best of Both Worlds. From the human tendency to avoid conscious decisions to the virtues of plans that are smaller than the available space, we cover strategies for enjoying our 4000 weeks (or perhaps our 800,000 hours — I think I was a bit more generous in my calculation for one of my books!).
In the Q&A section, Sarah and I address a query from a listener who feels guilty about how much revenue her non-profit consulting business generates compared with the salaries some of her clients earn. Should she feel this way? Please give the episode a listen, and as always we welcome ratings and reviews!
4 thoughts on “Best of Both Worlds podcast: Our finite lives with Oliver Burkeman”
4000 weeks had a big impact on me, especially Burkeman’s suggestion to tackle one project at a time. I read the book months ago, but still think of some of his messaging daily.
Me too! I’ve restructured my week so I only focus on 2-3 projects (so if I’ve got a heavy teaching week, I’m only “allowed” to work on one article or chapter) and I’m getting so much more writing done by focusing on one article until it’s done, versus flitting around when things get hard. I’ve been trying it for about 6 weeks and feeling much more accomplished at the end of the week – often finding on Friday afternoon, I’ve crossed 90% of my list off, versus 50% beforehand.
I’m also ignoring a lot of the little admin-y stuff I would have done before, and guess what, the sky hasn’t fallen yet?!
I loved this episode and I am so glad you brought Oliver Burkeman’s work to my attention.
It seems he contradicts your “teachings” in a way and I thought it was refreshing to hear you two talk about your respective ideas on time.
@Maggie – there’s probably more of an overlap than it might seem!