What is time blocking?
We thought we had better do a quick post on time blocking seeing as we mentioned it in this post on overcoming inaction.
Time Blocking: A Time Management Technique for Small Business Owners
Time blocking is a fancy word for scheduling 🤣
It’s about breaking your day into specific blocks of time dedicated to specific tasks or activities. It can be a highly effective way for small business owners to prioritise their tasks, stay focused, and manage their time more effectively.
Here are some of the benefits of time blocking for small business owners:
Helps you prioritise your tasks. When you time block, you have to decide which tasks are the most important and allocate time for them accordingly. This can help you avoid feeling overwhelmed and stressed all the things you need to do.
Keeps you focused. When you know exactly what you’re supposed to be working on and when, it’s easier to stay focused and avoid distractions.
Reduces procrastination. When you have a specific time blocked off for a task, it’s less likely that you’ll put it off until later. This can help you get more done and avoid feeling stressed about deadlines.
Makes the most of your time. When you time block, you’re less likely to waste time on unimportant tasks or activities. This can help you make the most of your available time and achieve your goals.
If you’re interested in trying time blocking, here are a few tips to get you started:
Set aside some time to plan. Before you start time blocking, take some time to plan your week or day. This will help you identify the most important tasks and allocate time for them accordingly.
Be realistic about your time. When you’re first starting out, it’s important to be realistic about how much time you can actually work. Don’t try to block off too much time for each task, or you’ll end up feeling overwhelmed.
Be flexible. Things don’t always go according to plan, so be prepared to be flexible with your time blocking schedule. If something unexpected comes up, be willing to adjust your schedule accordingly.
Use a time-tracking tool. A time-tracking tool can help you see where your time is actually going. Or just spend a week writing down how much time you spend on what. This can help identify areas where you can improve your time management.
Here are some additional tips for time blocking for small business owners:
Start small. Don’t try to do too much at once. Start time blocking for a few hours each day or a few days each week. Once you get the hang of it, you can gradually increase the amount of time you block off.
Experiment with different time intervals. Some people find that working in 30-minute blocks is most effective, while others prefer 60-minute blocks. Experiment with different time intervals to find what works best for you and what your business requires.
Take breaks. It’s important to take breaks throughout the day, even when you’re time blocking. Get up and move around, or step away from your work for a few minutes. This will help you stay refreshed and focused.
Don’t be afraid to adjust your schedule. As your business grows and changes, you may need to adjust your time blocking schedule. Be willing to make changes as needed.
Delegate and Collaborate: Time blocking isn’t just about organising your tasks; it’s also a chance to delegate and collaborate effectively. Small business owners can assign specific blocks to team members if you have them, ensuring that everyone is aligned on tasks and priorities.
Incorporate Buffer Time: Including buffer time between blocks can be helpful. This gives you a breather, accommodates unexpected tasks, and prevents a rigid schedule that might lead to burnout.
Include non business items on your schedule: We advise blocking in non business activities also such as grocery shopping, picking up kids from school etc.
Apps or templates.
We suggest using whatever works for you. We just use our calendar now- keep it simple 🙂
Some people prefer to use templates examples from ClockifyMe free downloadable printable here
There are some to do apps that also have time blocking, plus some specifically for time blocking including the following (there are many more available).
Sorted. (Apple iOS only, free plan or pro for $14.99- correct at time of publishing this post)
Todoist (Has a free plan for business and personal plus upgrade personal $6 per month or $9 per month for business- prices correct at time of publishing this post)