Know (and Avoid) Your Schedule Wreckers

planner_nyt_scaled.jpg The New York Times' Shifting Careers blog offers up five time management tricks, including Inbox Zero and unnecessary meetings, and strikes upon a truth of effective scheduling: Knowing your time-wasting weaknesses and laying down a firm policy against them.

Meeting people for lunch always derails me, yet for a while, I regularly met people for lunch. Then I got smart and instituted a fairly strong no lunch policy. Friends and colleagues teased me at first when I announced this. But they soon got used to my new approach, warming up to the idea of afternoon coffees ... Observe your schedule and notice the patterns you follow on your productive days. Then build a schedule around those patterns.

What kinds of meetings, activities or projects destroy your productivity (other than games, obviously), and how do you avoid them? Tell your stoic story in the comments.


    I've got two...

    After starting freelance work - the lunch thing was a big deal.

    So i've kind of shifted my hours around, I work a bit in the mornings, some in the afternoons, and a 3rd block at night.

    I like it broken up like that - but I guess thats not exactly what you're looking for.

    General internet distractions are the other.
    I cut back random browsing to select RSS feeds.
    When I feel the whim to go off and do something else, I pick up my bass and give that a go for a while. Learning a new instrument is much more productive for me and keeps my stress levels nice and low.

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