Let’s work smarter
We work a lot less hours than we think. If you work full time, you may think you work an 8 hour day, maybe longer. But do you? Really?
I read a fascinating article – We are terrible at planning our time. Here is how to fix it.
This explains that if we really think we are working 8 hours a day we are heading for burn out. At best we do 2.5 to 3 hours of focused work.
Research by Ron Friedman, analysing 225 million hours of working time, found that the average knowledge worker (someone who deals with information for a living, like a writer, developer, designer, or manager), is only productive for 12.5 hours a week. That’s roughly 2.5 hours a day.
That’s because there are all the other tasks that we must do. We go to meetings, we send and respond to emails, we multi task and so we aren’t as effective.
Some people are only productive for just over an hour a day.
So, we need to plan our day with this in mind.
To only expect to do ‘deep work’ for 2-3 hours a day anything else is a bonus
The article suggests we should plan our day in line with reality.
So rather than say e.g. we will write a blog post today we should say that we will research and write the outline from 9-11 tomorrow morning. Any distractions get put to one side till 11.
I like this idea.
I like to chunk time and to just focus on that.
For me, now, I’ve got 2 hours to draft some blog posts. Yesterday I set aside 2 hours to work on a LinkedIn Profile Makeover. During this time, I did nothing except this work, and if I finish sooner that’s a bonus.
I’m also much clearer on how to respond to emails.
I wait till I’ve done my first big piece of work and then review.
I also set up rules so any non-important emails go into a ‘reading’ folder along with other info emails I get from shops and newsletters. By reviewing this just once or twice a week, and having the items sorted under ‘from’ I can review much quicker, many get deleted and anyone who has sent more than 2 emails I unsubscribe. Opening any of these is becoming a rarity so soon I need to unsubscribe.
I hope this is helpful. Let me know what you think?