Time Tracking! Any tips?

October 19, 2017

I am always amazed when I hear Laura discuss her time tracking.  She’s been at it for over TWO YEARS!  And then Siobhan discussed it on yesterday’s podcast episode as something she loves, so I am doubly inspired.  I imagine it might be valuable from a few different angles:

1) an enhanced awareness of time as it is actually happening

2) the ability look back and see our lives more objectively than we otherwise would

3) data analysis that might allow us to come up with new/creative solutions for time dilemmas

I’ve tried to do it so many times, but am terrible at it.  I’m absolutely a tracker/recorder/cataloguer* at heart, so this is always surprising to me.  But then the days slip away again and I’m back at square one.

I may just have to accept this.  It’s not like documenting one’s time is essential for a successful or happy life.  But I’d love to do it temporarily to gain some of the insights noted above, and absolutely see how it might be helpful once I have a newborn (and have to come to terms with a whole new array of challenges!).

So, for the past few days, I’ve been doing it the old fashioned way — yep, paper.  I don’t really want another app to fiddle with on my phone.  Perhaps I could just use paper and then put some things that I want to pay attention to (sleep, exercise, time with kids, time at work, etc) into Excel for analysis?
If anyone has successfully done this for longer than 3 days (which is about my current record), I’d love to hear tips and whether it was helpful — or not!
* Things I track in some fashion: books I read, how I’m eating, clinical productivity, concerts/shows attended, new restaurants we try, finances (every expenditure).  Also workouts when I am training for something!  But time eludes me.