I was driving home last night contemplating my schedule, where and how I spend my time, and, most importantly, where it all goes. That got me thinking… while I know how and where I spend my time in a general sense, I was curious as to how much time in any given week I devote to the major items in my life. Who knows? Maybe by analyzing this I might be able to make some adjustments and improve my overall time management.
For me, major items include:
- Work (my primary, day-time job)
- Going to/from work (4 days/week since I usually work at home at least 1 day/week)
- Exercise (cycling, running, weight-lifting; this goes up in the warmer months as I'm out on the bike more)
- Writing (my current novel, short stories, this blog)
- Reading (books, blogs, etc.)
- Breaks (TV watching, playing with the dogs, hanging out with my wife; everyone needs some down time)
- Outside work (mowing the lawn, etc.; less now but more as it gets warmer)
- Personal Technical Projects (various side projects I work on to stay up on programming and technology)
- Sleep (almost forgot this one…)
I'm not going to include some things, like listening to podcasts, which I do all the time but which I always do whilst engaged in something else. Which brings up another point: I don't consider the time I spend driving to and from work as wasted because I'm always listening to podcasts or sometimes audio fiction. I'm a fanatic about maximizing every minute.
Given the above items, here's how much time I spend on each per week (my first attempt at this I was 5 hours short; since I'm not working off a super-accurate log here, I just spread those hours out to get to 168):
|Work ||45 ||27%|
|Commuting ||8 ||5%|
|Exercise ||8 ||5%|
|Writing ||16 ||10%|
|Reading ||18 ||11%|
|Breaks ||10 ||6%|
|Outside work ||6 ||4%|
|Technical Projects ||8 ||5%|
|Sleep ||49 ||29%|
|TOTAL ||168 ||100%|
And, in pie chart format:
Some of these items are immovable: work, sleep (I only get 7 hours/night as it is), commuting. Others could be changed, such as exercise or reading (sometimes I think I spend too much reading blogs). Breaks… I'd have to take a closer look at what I do in those 14 hours. Writing and Technical Projects… if anything, I want to spend more time, not less, in those areas.
Of course, this is a somewhat rough idea where I spend my time as some of the figures are pure estimates. If I wanted to really perform a close analysis I should probably carry a small notepad around with me for a week and write down each activity and time spent on it. Maybe I'll do that at some point, but for now I just wanted to get a general sense where all the time is going.
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