I have started using the little timeline on the left side of the Hobonichi techo cousin more extensively throughout this year. Complete with color-coding, which looks rather pretty, as a bonus. I suppose it’s my version of time blocking, which is all the rage in the productivity sphere. That said, I am not very good at keeping swathes of time open to work on bigger work projects.
This is probably because bigger work projects are a fairly new thing for me — at least in recent years. I went from seeing patients 9 half-days per week to just 4, with the rest of my time devoted to other things. I do prefer the variety and opportunity for creative work that comes with the graduate medical education side of my job. But I am definitely still adapting.
Today I am on call, so today doesn’t contain any protected time for deeper work. I will be focusing on patients and, given the nature of call, the day will be somewhat unpredictable. But once my call week is over, I think I need to start building in some protected time for deeper pursuits. I would like to get the following things done, and they are very hard to do while being interrupted with emails / calls / other ‘easier’ tasks that threaten to pull me away from deeper work. Just some examples . . .
- Look at some outpatient requirements more closely to be sure our graduating 3rd years will meet all of them per ACGME / ABP guidelines
- Evaluations audit of our program (see how we can improve our evaluations and make sure all necessary ones are in place)
- Read over the most recent set of guidelines very closely to make sure I am familiar with every in and out
- Start draft/outline of resident handbook to be used at next year’s orientation
- Look at independent work being assigned to residents and create one place for them to access all of it
- Research-related stuff (both GME-related and clinical projects I am trying to collaborate on)
There are all things that take enough concentration that trying to do them in 10 minute spurts between pings and interruptions is . . . silly. I need to work on my own calendar management. I know HOW to block time, I just have to actually do it! A project for after my week of call . . .
On another note, my half marathon training officially starts this week! My total weekly mileage this week will be 14 miles if all goes as planned, with my most intense week at 21. In contrast, when I used to train ~10+ years ago, I would run ~30-40 miles/week in preparation for a half. But I didn’t do any strength training back then.
I am not going to be as fast as my 20-something year old self, but I am hoping a sub-2-hr race is still within my wheelhouse, which is ~9:10/mi.
In unrelated news, I sort of want an Apple watch. Mostly because I would like to put my phone OUT OF MY SIGHT, particularly in the evenings and when I am with the kids, but I still want an easy way of answering calls and ‘screening’ texts while that is happening. Can anyone tell me if this plan might be helpful, or would it backfire? (I wouldn’t enact it until Dec or Jan regardless . . . must save allowance 🙂 ).