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  • It takes a lot of time and effort. Scheduling each minute of your day means... scheduling every minute of your day. It's a much more labor-intensive system than just writing out the 4 or 5 tasks you need to complete.
  • Few of us (if any) have the same schedule every day. Time blocking is much easier when you have a clear set of tasks. However, most of us need to constantly adapt to requests and demands.
  • We're bad at estimating how long tasks will take to do. We all have a tendency to be overoptimistic with how much we can get done in a day (psychologists call this the Planning Fallacy ). It can be disheartening (and stressful ) when you feel like you're constantly behind your schedule.
  • Constant interruptions and "urgent" tasks can destroy your system. Relying on upfront planning means that when one thing goes wrong, the whole system breaks down.
  • Flexibility is key in most workplaces. You can't tell your boss that you won't be able to get that urgent fix out today because it's not on your calendar. A strict schedule like this doesn't always jive with the demands of your workplace.
  • You can lose sight of the bigger picture. Focusing just on each day can sometimes make it harder to think about making progress on your long-term goals.




Time blocking is all about focus. To stay on task during each block, I like to use a simple Pomodoro timer (Right now I use Be Focused ). Having your remaining time visible can be a huge motivator and also help ...

Want to see some real-world examples of schedules designed for focus? Check out our guide to setting up a work scheduled designed for sustained attention .

One of the great things about time blocking is that it can be dead simp...

  • Place buffers in between tasks. We all have what's called "Attention residue" after completing a task that can take anywhere from 10-15 minutes to get over. If you assume you can switch gears on the spot, you're going to end up frustrated and behind schedule.
  • Schedule...

What's your morning routine ? How will you disconnect from work and make time for friends, family, and hobbies? These tasks are just as, if not more important ...

The first question you need to answer is: Why do you want to use time blocking?

Is it because you want more time for focused work ? Or to reduce your

Potential issues aside, time-blocking is still a powerful time management strategy . Especially when you see it as a framework for thinking about your day rather than a set of laws you can't break.

As Abby Lawson writes in

As Deep Work author Cal Newport writes :

"Sometimes people ask why I bother with such a...

Here's how you can use time blocking to make the most of the time you have each day.

Need more help taking control of your time? RescueTime shows you how you spend your day so you can optimize your schedule for focus and productivity.

Again, how Brad blocked out his time was based on his priority of spending time with his family. As Brad told us :

"Before having a baby, my wife and I would both work well into the evening hours, largely because we cou...

The human brain needs guardrails at work. Otherwise, we fall into what's known as Parkinson's Law:

"Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion"

By scheduling every minute of your day you not only gua...

This might sound like you're turning your calendar into a chaotic mess. However, it can actually have the opposite effect. When you fill your calendar with the tasks and things you want to do, it's harder for others to steal your time.

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Time blocking

It's the practice of planning out every moment of your day in advance and dedicating specific time “blocks” for certain tasks and responsibilities.

When you fill your calendar with the tasks and things you want to do, it’s harder for others to steal your time.




Time blocking your schedule

Time blocking your schedule

• Know your high-level priorities and goals.

• Start creating blocks for your time outside of work (morning routines, time with family/friends etc.)





Cal Newport, Author of Deep Work

"A 40 hour time-blocked work week, I estimate, produces the same amount of output as a 60+ hour work week pursued without structure."