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How To Use Time Blocking

Want to know one super important thing that can help you gain momentum immediately in the app? 

It’s called time blocking. It’s the go-to tool in our planning toolbox. 

And it is just what it sounds like — you break your time down into blocks. But it’s much more revolutionary than just that. 

We’re talking about the #1 technique you need to make progress on your most important projects. It’s the primary way to keep you from wasting time — your most precious resource. 

Rather than thinking about time in an open, unstructured way, time blocking is about making a coherent daily structure. One of the reasons time blocking works is it takes out the guesswork of what to do during pivotal parts of your day, and cuts down on the decision-making time it takes to get started. 

If you plan your time blocks out in advance you can dive right into the doing. 

A time block can last varying amounts of time, and your daily structure may use one of four different kinds of blocks based upon the type of activity done in those blocks. Here are four basic types:

  1. Focus blocks. 90–120 minute blocks of time where you’re especially creative, inspired, and able to do high-level work that requires focus.
  2. Admin blocks. 30–60 minute lower-energy blocks of time where you’re not in the zone to do the work that requires heavy lifting, but there are still other types of work you can do effectively.
  3. Social blocks. 90–120 minute blocks of time where you’re primed and energetically in the right space to meet with other people.
  4. Recovery blocks. Variable-length blocks of time, based on your needs, to be used for exercise, meditation, and self-care.

So you can see what the end product looks like, here’s an example of a weekly block schedule:

Weekly Block Scheduler Example

How to Use Momentum to Start Time Blocking

Momentum helps you shape your week and see where all of your blocks are and/or should be. You can conveniently manage your time blocks in the app, along with keeping track of projects, goals, and actions items. 

Momentum’s Weekly Planner is where you can start to do some of the heavy lifting of creating focus blocks in your schedule. 

If you schedule in time blocks, when you take a look at them you’ll know when certain types of activities need to be done.

You’ll want to make sure time blocks are placed to accommodate your energy levels, your work, and your requirements. Here are some suggestions:

  1. Don’t go longer than two Focus and/or Social blocks back to back without a Recovery block. 
  2. Put your Focus blocks where you have the best creative energy. For some people it's first thing in the morning, for others it might be early evening. Totally dependent on you, and what you know about yourself. 
  3. Put your Social blocks where you normally feel like seeing people. 
  4. Probably avoid Admin Blocks first thing in the morning, but if you must, work on items that are relevant for the day.
  5. Recovery Blocks are the wildcard — think about a morning routine with a combination of movement, eating, meditation/prayer, and planning/intention-setting. (Night owls still benefit from self-care.)
  6. As best you can, be consistent with the times you’re putting your blocks in. This will help you get into good grooves, improve habit-building, and limit decision-fatigue.

Now that you have the basics of time blocking down, you can get started blocking that sweet, sweet time. We’ll go more in-depth about each type of block in future posts. For now, you’ll have more space for what matters, and the fastest route to progress. 

A version of this post was originally published on www.productiveflourishing.com

Momentum Team

We're the team behind Momentum. And we're here to help get your most important projects from start to done.