Your Schedule-Take Charge and Find Time!

Your Schedule Holds Your Dreams

Your Schedule Holds Your Dreams and Goals

Your schedule can be a stress-reducer or a stress-creator, depending on how you structure it.

You’re the one who decides about your schedule.  But how often do you forget that, allowing your priorities to get hijacked, and falling into reactivity when it comes to structuring your time?

Taking Back Your Schedule

Rather than letting that continue to happen, I encourage you to forge a different course for yourself. Think of your schedule as the container you create to hold the activities that will move you toward your goals – whatever they may be.

Your schedule is the frame you give yourself – it is most emphatically NOT a glorified To-Do List! As we discussed in a September post about busy people and their schedules:

When it comes to our schedules, the emphasis needs to be on self-reference.  That’s true for lots of things.  And it’s most definitely the foundation on which a really useful schedule has to be built.

What Kind of Schedule Do YOU Work Best With?

So to create your optimal schedule, you need to know yourself and your work style.  Thinking about this, I was reminded of a piece by Paul Graham in which he compares and contrasts the Maker’s schedule and the Manager’s schedule.

Makers are people like programmers or writers – people who make things that involve focus and creativity.  Managers are the ‘bosses’ in his parlance. And what he notes is that, when it comes to what works, schedule-wise, Makers’ and Managers’ needs are very different. Managers typically break up their days into one-hour increments – perfect for meetings, connecting with people, etc.

But there’s another way of using time that’s common among people who make things, like programmers and writers. They generally prefer to use time in units of half a day at least. You can’t write or program well in units of an hour. That’s barely enough time to get started.

So, for starters, when thinking about your schedule, you need to decide whether you’re a Maker or a Manager.  And realistically, if you’re an entrepreneur or small business owner, you are most likely both. So build your schedule to accommodate both styles – perhaps cordoning off half days for ‘Making’ while scheduling smaller blocks of time for ‘Managing.’

 … and One More Suggestion for Your Schedule

If you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed by demands on your time, I urge you to create a schedule that includes blocks of time that you leave unscheduled.

You see, your schedule gives you the opportunity to create important time boundaries for yourself. Use this to make sure that the frame you create for your day doesn’t have you running from one thing to the next without time to take a breath!

Building in unstructured time in your schedule means you have built in time for:

  • Self-care;
  • Creativity;
  • Recharging your batteries;
  • Working on odds and ends that you never seem to get to;
  • Responding to unexpected things that come up during the day.

It’s up to you, how you want to use this time, but I definitely encourage you to NOT let it get eaten up too often by ‘odds and ends’ or ’emergencies.’  You can certainly be flexible about it – but try to use it for things that replenish you and make your heart sing!

Here’s to your schedule and your time success!

Comments

  1. Hi Paula, Very nice article! I knew in my heart that short blocks of time just don’t work for my creative side. Now I have permission to write or develop self-help programs in larger blocks of time and do the ‘managing’ parts in shorter blocks. I like that! Thank you!

    • Hi Kathryn – Great to hear from you – and I’m so glad that this was a helpful post. I have found the Maker/Manager distinction helpful, too!

      Wishing you a nice Thanksgiving …

      Paula

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