Do you really know where your time goes? Have you ever stopped to actually track it?
It’s been said you can see the true nature of your heart by looking at where your money goes (which I think is true). I also think you gain insight by looking at where you choose to invest your time (a form of currency).
A little ways back, I tracked my time spent at work, measuring everything I did on a minute-by-minute basis. My goal was to compare where I really put my time versus where I felt it was going. I learned some very interesting things (like: reading and responding to email sucks up a lot of time — a lot more than I thought).
Since I’ve been off work the past week and working with my wife on closing 2012 and entering 2013, we’ve been intentionally discussing what’s important to us (our values).
I decided to create a spreadsheet (yes I love spreadsheets!) to measure where the major chunks of my time go in a typical week. I’ve created six major activities, and allocated the amount of time spent in each daily. You’ll notice there are day-to-day variations in certain areas, like on Wednesday (date night with my wife).
Here’s the spreadsheet:
Where I really spend my time.
In reality, my six major activities in rank order are as follows:
#1: Sleep 33.63%
#2: Work 32.74%
#3: Family 25.60%
#4: Spiritual 3.87%
#5: Blog 2.08%
#6: Work-out 1.79%
So, while I say that my faith is important to me, in reality it is 4th on the list. While I say that my wife, daughter, and family is important to me, in reality it is 3rd on the list. Outside of sleep, work dominates where I choose to invest my time.
Without passing judgment on myself, I’m going to let the analysis sink in, and think about what should change (if anything).
What about you? Have you done an audit of your time, relative to where you want to spend it? If not, what do you think you’d find?