I’ve always been obsessed with my to-do list. It feels good to write everything out and feel organized. It feels even better to check off tasks as a complete them.
Alternatively, I quickly adopted the bad habit of beating myself up when I didn’t accomplish a task on my list during the day. I’d feel defeated, inadequate and like a failure.
The negative effects of running your schedule based on a to-do list can leave you feeling pretty crappy about yourself and your abilities. Instead of solely relying on my to-do list each day, I now also add in some block scheduling.
What Is Block Scheduling?
Block scheduling is when you organize your day based on a series of time slots. Instead of listing out everything you need to do for the day and hoping you get it all done, you assign specific tasks to available time slots to ensure a higher success rate.
A More Realistic Approach
Block scheduling allows you to see early on if you’re being realistic with your workload or not. I tend to get a lot done in a typical day but sometimes I go overboard and schedule way too much for the time I’m allotted.
For example, just this morning I completed a few tasks that I assumed would take me 1 hour to complete when it actually took me 2.5 hours to get everything done.
Time blocking can also help you prioritize your tasks based on order of importance. Sometimes, we try to do too much and focus on every little thing while neglecting some of the bigger, more meangingful tasks that will enhance our bottom line. People tend to make time for what’s most important to them. With a long to-do list, you’re selling yourself a lie that everything on that list is of the utmost importance.
Built In Efficiency
Matching your available time with tasks provides built-in efficiency since you know exactly what you have to do and when. It takes the guesswork out of deciding when you start a difficult task.
I like scheduling my most demanding tasks during the time of day when I feel most energized and motivated. I schedule to complete simpler tasks during time blocks that occur later in the day.
If you’re self-employed, block scheduling is going to be super helpful for your fluctuating schedule. Having a to-do list doesn’t hold much weight if you’re super busy with other responsibilities for the day. With block scheduling, you’ll schedule your productive time around your preferences and life’s occurrences.
Share Your Schedule With Others
When you block schedule, it’s easier to share your calendar with others instead of sharing a list of never-ending tasks or having to guess when you’ll be free.
Whether it’s your team, spouse, family members, or friends, you’ll have a clearer and more organized schedule to adhere to when your time block.
So can block scheduling really replace your rugged to-do list that never stops growing? I think the best option is to take the benefits of each method and integrate them.
I mainly use block scheduling but I also prioritize my to-do list and throw tasks into available time slots. This helps me get into the habit of realistically scheduling my time so I can get more done and skip out on other tasks without feeling like a failure.
What about you? Do you like block scheduling or sticking to a daily to-do list?