30 Minutes On, 30 Minutes Off

I love working. I admit it. I love the work that I do (well except for managing email). But I will often sit here for 6 hours before I realize the sun has gone down and I haven’t turned any lights on in the house and I’ve been sitting here in the dark and haven’t eaten since the oatmeal I chugged after the gym.
So I got a timer. A cheapo egg timmer from CVS. At first I was setting it to go off every hour so I’d focus on work for an hour and then turn to another ask for an hour. But that wasn’t helping anyone.
Last Monday, I experimented with setting the timer for 30 minutes at a time. No matter how onerous a task is, I can focus on just about anything for 30 minutes. I would do 30 minutes of full-on focused-down work and then the timer goes off, I reset and I do something totally non-work related. Totally non-computer related. Like watching the Alien Quadrilogy in bits and bites. Or doing Sodoku. Of course by Tuesday I was back to the usual all work/all the time schedule but I’m gonna try and reboot that for tomorrow.
This will be helpful when Ron is in Bangkok and Hong Kong in a few weeks. I’m liable to work 24/7 for the whole week.

2 thoughts on “30 Minutes On, 30 Minutes Off

  1. Margaret Marcuson

    I became a timer fan after using Marla Cilley’s housework system (www.flylady.net). She says, “You can do anything for 15 minutes.” So I began to apply this to work, too, with a lot of success. Sometimes if I just can’t get going I’ll start out with a series of 5 minute blasts on several different tasks. That helps get me over the hump.

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  2. Peter

    Great idea Andy.It might be somewhat distracting to co-workers hearing the timer sounding every 15 or 30 minutes but then your calendar software could be setup to display an alert every 15 or 30 minutes that could be silent.

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