Time Blocking by : 3 | 5 | 20 | 60

I think I speak for everyone here when I say that procrastination is a pain in the butt that we need to get rid of. So let’s get back to basics. The simplification of life requires a few things. Not only do we need to consume less, we would also have to be organized with time at the least. Too many years I’ve spent on finding ways and creating systems that work for me. And this is just a small snippet of what I do with my own method of Time Blocking. < <<< click this link to check out Todoist, they really blew my mind with their list. I love the Day Theming in particular cos I think it takes the pressure off of my ever so noisy brain chatter of to-do lists for the week.

Alright so let’s cut it up to minutes if a to-do list is too much for you. This can be done almost immediately. You don’t have to write it down or prep the night before. What you’re going to do is the present, right now at this moment as you’re reading this. Alright, let’s get down to it.

The 3 | 5 | 20 | 60 minutes

image: Mike Szczepan

3 mins ( Immediate )

This block time is set aside for tasks that can be done in a snap. A task that can be completed fast or almost instantly and we know that it’s been put at the back of our minds like forever or it’s something that we drag ourselves to do even though we know we can get it done in no time.

How Your Mind Should Operate When Doing This >>>
1. Breathe in

2. A thought comes in (of the task that can be done within 3 mins)

3. Launch yourself up immediately after the thought enters and deal with the task

Tasks Examples :

  • making coffee
  • opening paper mail
  • changing the water bowl for your pets
  • cutting fingernails
  • put laundry in the washer
  • collect all dirty socks and put in laundry basket
  • text a friend that you’ve been wanting to say hello to or anyone that you were suppose to text today
  • confirm or make an appointment / reservations

5 mins ( Quick )

image: Aditya Chincure

This block time is set aside for quick tasks that could be done quite fast even though it might take slightly more than 5 mins. There are many tasks that we tend to overlook due to thinking that it might take a bit more time than we’d wish it’ll take. The mind over reacts by absurdly over timing certain tasks making it look like it is daunting and will take forever.

How Your Mind Should Operate When Doing This >>>
1. Breathe in

2. A list of tasks will start overwhelming you but deal with the very first task that comes to mind (that can be done within 5 mins)

3. Launch yourself up by standing up after the thought enters and go get it done.

Tasks Examples :

  • reading important emails
  • watering plants
  • packing bag for the day
  • prepping mindset for presentation
  • returning calls or texts
  • ordering essentials online
  • cursory research on google for something later (time the shop closes, bus timings, flight arrivals)
  • wishing ” Good day” or texting “I love you”
  • helping sibling with a task they asked help for
  • ironing shirt

image: Karolina Grabowska

20 mins ( Short and Sweet )

This time block is set aside for just slightly longer tasks that you know needs at least some detailed attention paid to it. It can also be prioritized as ” Ok I need to sit down and do this now while I’m still thinking about it. Cos I need to get it done sooner or later”. It can be a scary thing that you need to face inevitably or a task that was appointed to you at some point and you’re taking too much time putting it off even when you’ve been given ample time to get it done. It could also be prepping food or cooking time. It’s the last-minute-people’s time hack basically. Just remember to keep it short and sweet.

How Your Mind Should Operate When Doing This >>>
1. Breathe in

2. That daunting task has popped in your mind now (you can be done with it in 20 mins, don’t worry)

3. Launch yourself up by standing up after the thought enters and pick up the tool/equipment or thing that gets you to start the action

Tasks Examples:

  • responding to an unwanted or difficult/ awkward text
  • calling your mom
  • reading and replying emails
  • filling up a form and sending it via mail or scanning the document that you’ve been asked for
  • finishing up a homework, assignment or coming up with a draft
  • writing up a short article or posting
  • scheduling your month with everyone
  • research for a project you’re in charge of
  • edit the public speaking presentation you prepared
  • edit a video or family photo that people have been asking you for
  • that short chat you needed to check in with a friend who’s not well or a relative/family that needs to be checked in on
  • facing someone who you need to make things clear with

60 mins ( Steady and Swiftly )

image: Laura Chouette

This time block is set aside for bigger tasks that require a good amount of time spent on it in order for you to get the best results out of that task . If the 20 mins block was for prep and drafting, then this part is where you actually do a full write up, edit, spell check and make it the best. It is when you want to catch up with someone that requires some down time for heart-to-heart conversation time. It is when the task expects you to be efficient and productive. It is when the task requires tender care and yet, be good with time management.

How Your Mind Should Operate When Doing This >>>
1. Recognise the task/ errand/ appointment to get done today ( cos this task required some pre-planning at the least)

2. Look at the time based on what needs to happen, move at the pace accordingly

3. Immediately start up for it (take a shower, call to confirm, get equipment/tools prepared)

Tasks example:

  • full write up
  • full post and edit of content
  • thorough house chores
  • running errands
  • hair cut appointment
  • grocery shopping
  • bicycle fix up
  • car service maintenance
  • pruning of garden
  • grooming day for pets
  • self care routine
  • lunch appointment with a buddy
  • spouse random date meet-up

Everyone has their own method that works for them and some are still searching for the right method that suits them best. So continue on the search and try out different ways, experiment and read up on it. It’ll help you in the long run to get things done more efficiently and be more productive with the time that we have in our day.

The 3 | 5| 20 | 60 is not a to-do list it’s just things that you can do within the stipulated time frame. It’s blocking out time for these tasks to get done. The only thing you need now is willpower , tenacity and a good head on time management and you’re all set to go. Watching the clock doesn’t need to be pressurizing. It can be fun to push ourselves to meet the requirements of the set time. This keeps the procrastination attitude at bay.

That’s it from me. If you’d like to read inspirational quotes, get motivated or share your thoughts and ideas, do head down to our instagram account @simplelifedaily and do check out our online store @thesimplelife.store ! Join our Telegram Channel too 🙂

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Keep your heads up! The weekend’s almost here.

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