Guide: get started with time tracking.
When it comes to figuring out what to track, there’s no right or wrong answer. Which is why it’s the question we’re asked most by new Timeular customers 🤔
We’ve put together this guide to give you everything you need to get going including:
- The different ways of approaching what to track
- How to implement in the app
- Tips to get the right data structure in place from day one
For good measure, we’ve thrown in some of our favorite hints for building a tracking habit, too.
Let’s get started! Pick what you’re looking to achieve 👇
Setting activities and being intentional about color. 🎨
At a basic level, everything in Timeular is about activities. These are the fundamental building blocks of time entries. An activity should represent what you’re working on and can be named whatever you like. Here are common ways to approach it:
- Tasks e.g. Coding, Slack, Meetings
- Project or client name
- An attribute or quality of a task e.g. Proactive, Reactive, Priority 1, Focus…
Each time entry ‘belongs’ to an activity and can have additional data attached to it like tags and notes to help categorize it and add more context.
See the section ‘How activities, tags and spaces work in Timeular’ to learn more.
Another aspect of activities is the color you assign to them – don’t underestimate the power of it! This guide refers to applying color as a symbol (green as ‘good’ tasks or warm colors for energising tasks, for example).
When it comes to staying focused on an activity, getting a dopamine hit when starting to track a ‘good’ one and reviewing your data, the intention behind color becomes apparent.
How activities, tags and spaces work in Timeular
Throughout this guide we’ll use some Timeular terminology. A lot of these concepts are interchangeable (e.g. you can track “Meetings” as the activity and #client as the tag just as you can track “Client” as the activity and #meeting as the tag to achieve the same).
Activities are the basic level of categorization in Timeular. You can set up an unlimited number of these in the app and they’re what you assign to the 8-sided Tracker if you have one.
Spaces are ‘groups’ of activities. Everyone has access to a private space by default but if you’re on our Pro tier, you can create any number of extra spaces and even invite people into them to track the same activities, tags and mentions. While you can create an activity of the same name in more than one space, there’ll be no relationship between the two (other than name).
Tags and mentions are ways to sub-categorize your activities to give them more granularity. #tags and @mentions can be used in any way to apply structure across time entries. Just like activities exist within a space, so do #tags and @mentions.
That’s a lot of words, so here’s an easier way to visualize it:
What is it you want to achieve?
The first thing to say is: there’s no right or wrong way to track. Our suggestions below are just that. You might find a mix-and-match approach works better for you, or even your own (let us know what it is!). We recommend picking one to start with and then experimenting with others over time. You can always come back to the old one and maintain your data.
Starting out, the best question you can ask yourself is this: what’s your most important time management problem that you’d like Timeular to help with?
Below are the most common buckets👇. Click one to discover best practices, templates to achieve it in Timeular, tips and more. Each one is relevant for you as an individual and also for your team, if you’re managing one.
What would you like Timeular to help you achieve?
- 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 🏷️