Today’s resolution: Ready, set, time!

26 Jun
iphone timer

Time value

Social media, while useful, is a time sucker. I sit down to check my email, FB, Twitter or whatever and before I know it, I’ve bounced all over the web in a dizzying, dazing game of link tag.

The iphone (or whatever smart phone you own) makes this even easier. I can be “efficient” about it, too, by using apps that allow me to simultaneously post messages over multiple platforms. That helps me shave seconds off the social media time suck.

Working for myself has made me very aware of how much time can be lost when I’m wandering a linked-in labyrinth.

Frankly, I don’t have time to waste. Time literally is money. So social media time-suckage must be managed. Actually, all my time must be managed, and my iphone has become the instrument for this.

It’s simple. I use the iphone timer function to time everything from how long I read the newspaper to FB breaks to writing sprints to doing research to interviews to gazing out the front door with Simone.

The timer has saved me many times from getting so lost in work that I miss an important phone call or leave the office too late to arrive at an appointment on time. That last is especially valuable because I hate being late. If I want people to respect my time, it’s imperative that I value theirs.

The timer solution is so easy that I can’t believe I didn’t think of it earlier. But I never had an iphone. This little thing has changed my life beyond the obvious. It’s my alarm clock, off-the-cuff camera, organizer, calendar … and so much more.

iphone with hourglassBut the timer … what a tool! When I set it, for example, for a 3o-minute writing sprint, that means that I won’t stop to check FB or my email or do anything else off task until that timer sounds. (I have 5:44 minutes left to finish this post.)

The timer takes away the pressure to multitask — the method of time management that more often than not decreases rather than increases productivity.

But the real key to the success of the timer is that I’m the timekeeper. If someone else — say, an employer — were timing my work, I should hate it.

But timing myself makes me feel in charge, in control. Of course, I shouldn’t need a timer for that. But it’s a great reminder as well as a timely tool.



2 Responses to “Today’s resolution: Ready, set, time!”

  1. Laura Cartwright Hardy June 26, 2011 at 11:14 am #

    Ever so true re: time sucker. Downright vampire-ish. Nice tip.

  2. Cary June 27, 2011 at 7:11 am #

    Timing is everything…

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