a simple time-blocking system to become more effective

a simple time-blocking system to become more effective

“To become fit requires discomfort, to earn a significant income requires discomfort, to become great at anything, requires you to pay the price… 

To become great, you must choose to allocate your time to your greatest opportunities. You will have to choose to spend time on the difficult things that create your biggest payoffs. To be great you will need to live with intention. That will require you to be clear on what matters most, and then to have the courage to say no to things that distract you.”

― Brian P. Moran, The 12 Week Year

Performance Time mainly includes three primary components: strategic blocks, buffer blocks, and breakout blocks.

Strategic block: A strategic block is a three-hour period of time that is scheduled in advance. During this block, you accept no mental interruptions — no phone calls, no emails, no coworkers, no visitors. You focus all your energy and attention on key strategic and money-making activities. This could be writing proposals, making sales calls, or closing deals. Doing so helps you concentrate your intellect and creativity on specific pre-planned tasks and hence produces breakthrough results. Over time, you’ll be amazed by the quantity and quality of the work you can produce with this approach.

Buffer block: The aim of buffer blocks is to group together low-value activities — like emails and voicemails — that tend to be inefficient so that you can increase your productivity by dealing with all of them in one single sweep. This allows you to stay focused on the most important activities throughout the day. Depending on your needs, you can schedule one or two 30-minute to 60-minute buffer blocks to tackle all the interruptions.

Breakout block: A breakout block is a minimum three-hour block of scheduled time that is spent away from any work-related activities and thoughts. It’s easy to get sucked into working endlessly for insane hours, but this is terrible for productivity. Rather, it’s wise to set some time aside to recharge, rejuvenate and replenish. Use this time for fun and participate in any non-work-related activity that you thoroughly enjoy. We all need this time to replenish our reserves and open ourselves to fresh ideas and viewpoints.  

When you plan your week next time, try this strategy for time blocking. When you regularly block your time for important activities that move you towards your goals and learn to use your time with more intentionality, you become more focused and effective. You feel less stress, increased confidence and a greater sense of control.