I started an experiment recently to start tracking how I’m my spending time in 30 minute increments. Because I’m actively updating it, it is a more empirical view of my time than I’ve ever had before, and is pretty enlightening.
The tracking itself is simple and done in a Google spreadsheet, and is really easy to update through the Sheets mobile app. I chose to do this in a spreadsheet vs. a calendar or tracking app because it allows for more control in inputs and greater flexibility in analysis. Each row represents a 30 minute block, and each column is a day. Each increment is assigned a category: family time, sleep, work, chores, etc. I try to be as detailed as possible, and also have included daily to do’s in this spreadsheet.
This sounds intense but since it only takes a few seconds to update and I’ve found it quite manageable - infact, it’s strangely addictive. I’ve been doing this for 2 weeks, so still a long ways to go before it becomes an engrained habit.
It has already helped me become more deeply curious about myself and improved a pattern of daily and weekly reflection. Since my todo’s are also in the spreadsheet, I’m able to track how much I committed to vs. what I completed, and other interesting trends in productivity.
I’m really enjoying this exercise I will definitely be sharing more of insight in the upcoming weeks.
As a note, I recognize the view of time being more valuable than money is in itself is a privilege, because the anxiety and cognitive load of financial burdens is overpowering. I consider myself extremely lucky to even be able to do something like this.