Build healthy time habits and find better work-life balance 🕔
When it comes to building healthy time habits and finding better work-life balance, the overarching goal is to be finishing work at a sensible time as much as possible, taking regular breaks and making sure that you’re allocating enough time to important tasks.
1) Select activities
You’ll want to start by focusing on qualities of the time entries – when you start and stop work, how often you’re switching tasks and how long you’re spending on certain activities.
Therefore we recommend that you start simple. Pick the handful of activities that you spend the most time on and forget the rest for now.
e.g. that could be:
- “Internal comms (Slack)”
- “External comms (Email)”
Applying the Pareto principle and focusing on the 20% of activities that take up 80% of your time is a good move.
2) Set a Goal that reflects your ambition for balance
Next, set a Goal in the app that reflects what you’d like to achieve (click ‘My Goals’).
The default goal of spending 40 hours per week tracking is a good place to start (adjust this as needed).
Keep yourself in check that you’re balancing putting in the hours you need, without going over (more than you’d like).
3) Making changes as you go to find balance
Once you’ve started tracking and got the data you need, it might be that you’ve spotted something that you’d like to change, e.g. next week spending less time switching between tasks (managing distractions).
As you go, tweak your goal or layer new ones on, and think about adding more granularity to activities either by one activity into two (“External comms” → “External meetings” and “External email”) or by adding tags (#meeting, #email).
This will give you additional detail to help you shift and plan your week to make sure you can make the changes you need to maintain healthy time habits.
How long should I track for? 🤔
Short answer – for as long as it’s needed to build and maintain healthy time habits and a better work-life balance.
It’s best to continue tracking until you meet your desired outcome and then pick the next outcome that makes sense for where you’re then at.
Our philosophy is that time tracking is much like staying fit – you may need a short bursts of high intensity exercise at times and at other times it’s a case of staying in shape with less intense but regular activity.
A lot of our users find a weekly cadence of 1) setting a tracking goal → 2) tracking it → 3) reviewing and identifying change → 1) setting a new goal (etc) to be a good rhythm.
So, look to the week ahead and then ask yourself the question again. Remember, it takes a few days to ingrain the habit of time tracking when you’re starting out.
Tips and final words of encouragement 🙌
- Start by figuring out what’s your most important time management problem that you’d like Timeular to help with (rather than just starting to track random activities).
- Don’t try to track every little thing, or be a hard-ass about stopping the clock when you go to the bathroom or get more coffee.
- It’s hard to track 100% of your time right away, start easy and track the big things first. Be easy on yourself if you missed little things.
- If you have a Timeular Tracker put it somewhere where you see it often – it’s a great physical reminder, e.g. below your monitor or next to your phone
- If you don’t have a Tracker put a Post-It or sticker near your monitor as a visual clue to track
- Adjust our reminders in the Settings > Reminders & Emails section, e.g. we have a start of day reminder, long time entries reminder aka. Pomodoro reminder, and many others that assist you in our daily workflows
- Get used using our CMD+E (Mac) or CTRL+E (Windows/Linux) Quicktrack shortcut to easily start and stop tracking out from any app
- Easily fill in gaps in your timesheet and edit wrong time entries with drag and drop functions
Need more help? Get in touch with us and we’ll be glad to help.
What do you want to achieve next?
- Build healthy time habits and find better work-life balance 🕔
- Improve my health and wellbeing 🧘
- Prove something I believe I already know🧑⚖️
- Achieve more and make more of an impact with my time 🎯
- Take control of my time 🎧
- Discover where my time goes 🤔
- Help manage ADHD or neurodevelopmental condition ⏱️
- Track time spent on specific projects or clients 🏷️
Go back to Guide: get started with time tracking.