How to manage your time

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Whether you’re planning work or life, schedule the things you don’t want to fall through the cracks first. Plan everything else around those things.

How to create a schedule with Google Calendar

  • Make a list of weekly activities to include in your schedule.
  • Prioritize them. (If you read my time management book, pull these from your Grid.)
  • Sign up for, or log in to Google Calendar.
  • Go to Settings (gear icon).
  • Click Add calendar > Create new calendar.
  • Name it, add a description (optional) and set your timezone.
  • Create calendar.
  • Go back to the main calendar view.
  • Hit the three dots next to your new calendar. Choose Display this only for a clean slate.
  • In your new calendar, click the +Create button to add an activity. Start with the most important.
  • Block out your sleep hours.
  • Arrange the rest of the activities in your list in the available space. Here’s an old video tutorial which may help.

Reverse engineer your time

Now let’s talk about the big picture.

Instead of asking “What’s my goal?” ask “How do I want to spend my days?” Work backwards from there. This is important because many of us pursue what’s in front of us with no thought about how our days will look.

For example, a lot of people want to escape the 9 to 5, but make choices that ensure they will spend their days working 9 to 5. If, on the other hand, you want flexibility in your days, what are the logical (reverse) steps between there and where you are now? (Psst…there’s never been a better time to get started online.)

FAQ

How do I manage email?

Touch it once. Act: respond, delegate it to someone else, task it or delete it. If it’s completely out of control, declare email bankruptcy and get a fresh start.