Just how much time are you wasting on your computer?
for the vast majority of us. We spend a lot of time on our digital devices. After all the world has made a real transition towards knowledge work and for most careers, that means spending a ton of time on the computer, the smartphone or the tablet. That's why the first practical section of this course is going to deal with digital productivity and why it is the longest and most detailed portion of this entire course. But before we do that, let's take a step back and look at the big picture. As the old adage goes. What gets measured gets improved and what gets measured and reported improves exponentially it follows then that it's only by measuring how productive or unproductive we are that we can truly realize gains. Let me give you some tough love for a second. You have no idea how much time you spend or should I say waste on your digital devices and it's not your fault. See these devices and the apps that are loaded on them have been designed to be incredibly addictive. There are doze...
ns of books and entire teams of people dedicated to the study of how to make you compulsively use these products like someone sitting at a slot machine for hours on end, you just can't help but be sucked in. And that's how the system has been designed. There's always another post. Another message. Another video. Another article or another level to keep you staring at your screens without even realizing how much time is going by. I for one was shocked to find that my little Pomodoro technique breaks of viewing. Funny internet memes weren't consuming a handful of chunks of five minutes per day. They were costing me on average hours a day. And guess what though? I know and I even teach that communication and scheduling are a massive source of time wasting. I figured out that in one quarter, in 2018 I spent a total of 90 hours or more on slack checking in with my staff. That's two entire work weeks every three months that I'm spending talking about work but not actually getting it done. But wait a second. How did I measure this in order to keep myself accountable And more importantly, how did I correct the problem enter rescue time. Rescue time is a really cool cross platform application that you can install on your Mac pc Linux machine, android phone and more it sits on your computer and measures how much time you spend on various activities. Then you categorize those activities from very productive to very unproductive. It will then send you out a report and summary every week helping you understand where your time is going now. Just by understanding where your time is going, you're going to immediately see benefits like me. You will almost certainly be shocked to see just how much time you are wasting on things like email, group chat or scrolling through facebook plus if you complement rescue time with the screen time feature on your iphone or the digital well being feature on your android device, both of which offer similar reporting on mobile you're going to be in for a real shock. These two apps when put together will help you easily identify your problem areas and make a conscious effort to cut down on the things that are wasting your time. Plus all of these features are completely free so why not take advantage. I love rescue time for a lot of reasons and I've been a subscriber of their premium plan for years. First of all it allows me to set goals such as a minimum of one hour of writing per day or a minimum of five hours of productivity per day. But what I like most about Rescue time are the warnings and the block feature you see I have it set up so that on my writing days it actually doesn't allow me to do the normally productive things that distract me from writing such as checking emails or posting in our private membership group on facebook. Then even on my normal work days I have rescued time, warned me if I'm spending too much time on things like email helping me take advantage of Parkinson's law. Best of all. If I ignored these warnings and spend time scrolling through irrelevant articles or shopping online, rescue time will actually lock me out of everything but the apps and websites that I've previously designated as very productive. Pretty cool right now. Recently in a monthly challenge on environmental design psychologist Benjamin hardy taught our private membership community about the fact that willpower simply doesn't work. It's much better. We learned to use what Ben calls forcing functions, things that set you up in your environment to force you to do what's best for you. Setting up these forcing functions. Takes the elements of will power and decision making right out of play. It doesn't matter how much I want to browse facebook on a Wednesday with rescue time set up the way it is. I simply can't. So your homework for this lecture is to download and configure these applications on all of your devices for your mac pc or Linux computer. I have provided you with a special link to Rescue Time which you can use for free or choose to spend something like $7 a month for a greatly enhanced productivity with the professional version for your iphone and ipad. You should definitely make use of the included screen time feature and take a look at the past reports to understand how much time you're spending on your phone and how you're spending it once you know that I would set it up so that there are actual limits on how much time you can spend on a specific app or a group of apps. Additionally I like to set limits on my time so that I can't stay on my phone after 9:30 p.m. And I can't check my messages until at least seven a.m. For your android devices. You can actually do a similar thing with the suite of digital well being features that google has released using these apps might make you feel a little bit like a kid having their phone taken away by mom and dad, but take it from me. You cannot rely on your own judgment or willpower when it comes to digital devices. So do yourself a favor and install some tools that not only help you assess the problem, but also get it under control.