Tracking the elusive time bandits

Where did it all go? How much of your time is being spent on emails or on the phone instead of accomplishing your priorities for the day? If you don’t have a clear picture of how your days (and hours) are spent, it’s going to be difficult to make improvements.

The first step to using your time better is knowing how you’re spending it now.

Keep a list on paper or a spreadsheet of what you did and when. A perfect place would be in the Daily Notes section of your PlanPlus Online homepage. Although this takes some effort, it forces you to make more conscious decisions about how you spend your time.

Each week, look at where your time was spent. Is there a productivity hole that needs plugging? Perhaps you’re spending longer than you realized on email—or ‘quickly checking Facebook’ is adding up to several hours over the course of a week.

Think of yourself as a lawyer—billing your time to different projects such as work, sleep, travel, chores, TV, family, etc. Do these numbers reflect the number of hours you’d like to bill to these projects? What would the ideal be? Can you change your schedule to get closer to the ideal?