#00 Challenge: where does your time go?
Are you sure to know how you spend your time? Take up this challenge and you will know.
This challenge is meant for letting you learn something new. Not by explaining, but by doing.
Maybe you are not satisfied with how you use your time. Maybe you want to get more results with less effort.
Before starting to think about changing the way you use your time, you should assess your current situation. This challenge is meant to be like a mirror. In the mirror, you can see if you have a big or small nose, if your hair is combed or wild, and the color of your eyes.
The goal here is the same: draw a reliable and clear picture of your actual situation.
I don't want to waste your time, so ask yourself «Why would I want to do this?».
If you couldn't answer the question, then don't do it. If you answered with something like: it would be nice ... Then don't do it.
It is not a hard challenge, and it is not an easy one. Now, if you feel ready, then do it. You win when you are able to record five days in a row.
Record how you use your time for a week. Record everything: if you go to the bathroom, if your receive a call, if you eat something. Set a timer on your smartphone at an appropriate time interval: 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour. Choose the time interval yourself. You should be able to recall exactly what you did during that time interval. You can also use a kitchen timer, if you prefer.
Record what you did in that time interval, and set the timer again.
Record also your sleep. In the morning set the time you went to sleep and the time you woke up.
Record your time everyday from Monday to Friday. I don't recommend recording Saturday and Sunday because those are free days, and I don't believe in planning free time.
I would be very happy if you wanted to give a try to the oneatatime recorder, that I created expressly for this challenge, and you can also choose to use a different strategy if you want.
What's important is to record what you do in your day, for five days.
I have created this nice template for recording what you do of your time: oneatatime recorder. It features a central circle with the time of the day, in 24 hours, and dotted lines, corresponding to 30 minutes, coming out of the center for helping you write what you did.
Download, and print the template. Write the date, and start recording. In the center you can write a summary of how you spent your time on that day.
Using a calendar
You can use a digital calendar, like Google Calendar, and record how you use your time as events. It's easier if you are moving around often, during the day, and doesn't require you to bring paper and pen with you.
Pen and paper
You can take a sheet of paper, write down the day and record what you are doing, each time your timer rings. Don't forget to mark the hour of the day.
I also tried recording a timelapse of my day using a camera. It almost works if you are in lockdown and smart-working. At the end of the day it's messy because it's not easy to understand what you was doing in the video, at the end of the day.
Start recording your daily activities on Monday. Continue recording till Friday. If you want, you can record Saturday and Sunday too. I don't recommend recording Saturday and Sunday because they are free days, and I don't believe in planning free time.
My Challenge completed
Here you can see the pictures of my recordings for each day from March 29th, to April 2nd: challenge completed!
Monday March 29th
Tuesday March 30th
Wednesday March 31th
Thursday April 1st
Friday April 2nd