Do you ever wonder where your days are going?
Supposedly there are 24 hours in a day, but some days seem to not even happen. Sleep takes up about 7 hours a day for most people. But that still leaves 17 hours in a day! Does it feel like you have 17 hours every day?
Here are some things you could do with those 17 hours:
Does it feel like you could do those things every single day? Well, of course not because you have to pay bills or go to school or do both. But even then, does your average day feel like the length of 7 NBA games?
It probably feels shorter. So where is the day going? Let's find out.
First, let's get a general sense of your day. Use the sliders below to reflect how much time you spend on each part of your day.
Take your time and slide those sliders.
Ok done? Great!
This is what your day looks like:
Ok maybe your actual day looks different than that. But can we take a moment to appreciate how amazing that schedule is? Imagine how productive you would be if that's what your day looked like!
So what's wrong here? That is how much time you spend at work/school, and at home. But clearly your day isn't that or you would be more productive.
Take one last look at your perfect schedule. It's about to go through some changes.
We need to make your schedule more accurate. First, we should factor in your morning routine. How long does it take you to get up, dressed and ready in the morning?
Here's your updated day:
Still not bad! You lost some productive time, but it could be worse.
Let's add a few more things to your schedule.
How much time do spend eating lunch?
Also, you have to eat again later. How much time do you spend eating dinner?
Maybe someday we'll be transporting anywhere we want instantly. But for now, most people use fast metal boxes to get around. How long does it take you to get to work/school?
So we can see your schedule degraded a bit. You lost some productive time to your commute, and 30 minutes you consider work is really just you putting things in your mouth.
We've been exploring the big chunks of your day until now. But there are many things that happen randomly throughout your day, also known as distractions.
Let's explore just one of these distractions and see what it does to your day. For most people, their biggest distraction is their phone.
Every white strip is you checking your phone. Before adding this distraction, your schedule was made up of pieces, but now your schedule is cut into pieces! Luckily you can't check your phone while you sleep, or it would be even worse.
Checking your phone is only one of many possible distractions that happen throughout your day. Here are some more common distractions:
Distractions by themselves already segment the day. But what happens after the distraction is even worse.
When you go from one task to another, you don't instantly start performing that new task at a high level. Your brain needs time to become familiar with the new task.
To make your schedule more accurate, we need to add the amount of time it takes you to switch tasks.
Now all the parts of your day where your brain is warming up on a new task have also been cut out.
Notice that this also includes distractions. So when you're doing a task, and then get distracted, your brain has to warm up again even if you go back to the same task. This is what makes distractions so costly, each one forces your brain to warm up again.
Given all these slices cut out of your day, here is how much work you're actually getting done:
In reality, it might be worse. Countless distractions happen throughout your day. Each distraction takes you out of your 'flow' and then your brain has to warm up again.
We think of our days as big chunks of time. But really our days are made of tiny pieces, and each time we switch tasks or get distracted we lose another tiny piece. Slowly these pieces add up until we wonder where the day went.
Do everything in your power to keep your day intact. Because once your day gets cut into tiny pieces, you're not in control anymore.
You have 24 hours left today, make the most of it.