Time Striping

hungry? Why not play cricket?

hungry? Why not play cricket instead?

I’m experimenting at the moment with striping my time, at least during the week: setting certain times to do certain things.

This worked really well in the run-up to NaNoWriMo last year, as I was able to get all the things done I needed to get done* in a compressed timescale, so I am applying similar approaches to a couple of my goals for the year:

  • weight loss – I need to control my eating. I am making adjustments to what I eat (less cake and butter, more fruit and water) but the big challenge for me is in snacking. I have a lot of food available to me during the day and because it’s there… So, the picture above is of my striped approach to eating, which is to control snacking during the day by telling myself to drink water first and fruit second.
  • writing – I am still formulating this plan, but the basic stripes are:
    • early morning: write a blog post if needed, or words if not
    • morning bus: write words
    • evening bus: other prep. Might be a blog post, but should be plotting and ideas

From this you can see that I’ve got mixed stripe schemes going on here: the foreground scheme of what I am actually doing, and the background of trying to stop myself devouring every piece of food that I encounter.

Other stripes during the day might include lunchtime, although that’s perilously variable, and there will be spots of time open in the evenings and weekends but those are too irregular to call them stripes, and they are likely to be occupied by other tasks for the next few weeks at least**.

There are some useful ideas in The Productive Writer in this area, in particular scheduling blocks of time to work on particular things, although I am not getting down to that level of detail yet.

[*] well, to a first approximation.

[**] yay! Tax time!

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