November 17, 2008

How I cut down my time on the computer

I’m very good about setting good work/ life boundaries but still, now and again, my computer time gets out of hand.

No excuses – I admit that I find it relaxing to be on the computer and of course, there’s no end to all the blogging going on – I could literally read blogs the entire day. If I let myself.

Anywayyy, I introduced a two-step process – 15-minute blocks together with my trusty old kitchen timer.

15-minute blocks
In my desk notebook (you do have a desk notebook, don’t you?), I draw little square blocks. If I’m going to work on my newsletter, I know it should take me about an hour to put it together so I write “newsletter” and draw 4 squares on the same line.

Kitchen timer
I then set the timer for 15 minutes and start working. Somehow that ticking keeps me focused and on track. When the timer pings, I mark off a cross through the first block, set the timer and start working again.

Why this works
It helps to first decide what you want to get through in each 15-minute block of time. If I want to read blogs, I know that I can do so but when that timer pings, it’s time to get back to work again.

I also like to batch some tasks (typically things like web maintenance) so I may have 4 pages to update. I know exactly what I want to do on those pages so I literally go in, do my thing and save. With my timer ticking along!

You all know I spend 15 minutes a day on email. Besides email time, my goal is to only spend an average of 60 minutes on the computer a day – that’s 7 hours a week maximum. That’s besides client work because I do need the computer for my coaching calls and to do client action plans.

Do you have a computer time goal? How do you reduce your time on the computer?

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Marsha said...

I hadn't planned on reducing my computer time. It just happened naturally when I took the internet out of my kid's rooms and set them up with Net Nanny on our main computer. They both want to get their time in, so naturally, I get less time because I have to share it with them!
I have found that now I get far more accomplished around the house now because I suddenly have a lot of extra time on my hands!

Marcia Francois said...

Hello other Marsha

That's a great solution - to share the same computer.

My husband and I just did that today so that forced me to be really focussed when I got the computer back LOL