How I Use Time Blocking
How I use time blocking!
As many of you know, I started Monat four years ago. And at the time I had 4 kids, all aged six or under, and was also trying to keep up with my blog. In order for me to fit any semblance of work into my day, it took some creative scheduling so I didn’t have to sacrifice family time. If you don’t already know this I decided to homeschool my kids and therefore I was extremely busy. To add to this I felt the need to make time for self-care.
Furthermore, when I felt overwhelmed, I realized I was subjecting my kids to the burned-out version of myself. Which was not pleasant. I often felt more annoyed with my kids and pushed them away. So I began to set aside business hours. Those hours were set so I could have a certain amount of time in the day to spend on work.
The time schedule I started using is called time blocking. I found it was easier to work when my kids were asleep. Thus, at that time, I decided to set aside an hour during nap time and again in the evening to work. This made me feel less frustrated and stressed about making time for my kids and my work.
How I use time blocking planners
Before I started time blocking I had plans for the day that revolved around my children. Which I now understand was not the way I needed to plan my day.
The particular reason for this is when I was supposed to give my children my undivided attention. I felt like I couldn’t. Instead, I felt so stressed about getting my tasks for work done. And was unable to keep my mind on the activities before me. The time with my kids didn’t turn out the way I had hoped. My children were disappointed and I was distracted and felt hopeless in my circumstance.
So, when I started time blocking I bought a planner to help me block out certain times. I blocked out time for each task in my busy schedule for the week. When the time came I knew I was going to be able to sit and give my full attention to the task. I highly suggest getting a planner to help you block time. In my opinion, it is especially useful if your planner is designed for time blocking. However, any planner will do! If you choose to use a normal planner, I like to color code my day by what task or activity is planned!
When planning my week I also found I spent a little too much time on my devices. So when planning my time blocks it was helpful to decide whether that time was going to be spent unplugged. Or plugged into my devices. Thus, when I started on the task I was able to get it done in time without distractions!
My Time Blocks
As I got more familiar with time blocking I decided that the morning was a great time for some self-care. The morning hour or two I spend doing activities for myself. For example, my gratitude journal, exercise, and getting ready for the day. All before my kids are even up for the day – I have plenty of personal time to accomplish the daily habits that make me feel more me.
Now, as I plan my week. I plan for those personal habits to be completed in the morning. Or what I like to call my morning block. By creating my morning block I know what I can get done before my kids are up. I can almost guarantee that if you make a time block for yourself to practice self-care you will find that the rest of your day becomes easier. Practice your self-care in whatever way you need! After my morning block, I know that I feel more at ease and excited about the time I spend with my kids.
TIME with KIDS
That leads me to the time I remain focused on my kids. The period I spend with them includes the time I have set for homeschooling. As I’m sure most of you know, I homeschool my 4 children. This length of time is my afternoon time block. From 9 am to 12 pm I spend my time with each of my kids. I give each of them one on one time when they need it. Most homeschooling parents like me, have struggled to figure out what kind of schedule worked best for homeschooling their kids. I found that by making this afternoon time block. It allows my children and me to spend a few hours powering through school work for the day. And opens up the rest of the day for productive activities.
I am unplugged during the afternoon block with my children. So any distractions I could have aren’t a problem. My kids know that they can rely on me to help them with school during that time. And anything else they need from me for that matter! I have noticed that because of this time block my kids tend to feel more confident in their school work.
WORKING on ME
My next time block is for later that afternoon. This time block is set for working on my business. As I mentioned before I had a lot of trouble staying focused on tasks throughout the day. I am so happy to say that I am able to optimize my time throughout the day. And stay focused on the tasks before me. Now that I am able to be in the moment- I don’t feel frazzled or burnt out!
I feel excited when I come around to my work block! And feel ready to complete the things I need to accomplish. For example, I spend my time working on blog posts or updating my Instagram. I also make time to work on creating new content and working with Monat to build my better business.
Time Blocks and Scheduling Appointments
As a mom of 4, I can’t tell you how much easier scheduling appointments has become. Almost immediately after my kids are up and ready in the morning or finished with the school week. Which ends on Thursdays for us, it’s time to take care of business!
MAKING TIME for HEALTH
As any parent knows, taking your children for doctor visits and dental checkups is never fun. But with four kids underfoot daily it’s sometimes difficult to even find just one hour. Especially during their busier hours when we have some downtime that isn’t already booked by activities.
I have decided to add a block specifically for doctor’s appointments. Since I decided to add a block for that task my children and I are at ease when it’s time to gather and go. Another thing I’ve noticed is that my kids are happy, ready, and feel comfortable with the day’s plans. And despite their distaste for the necessary appointments, they know their needs will be met. And will be rewarded with time to spend with the family or activities they enjoy.
I highly suggest making a specific time block that is set to help you take care of your family’s physical and mental well beings! Even if that time is spent at home, having a health time block is amazing and so helpful. If you’re anything like me, it can be hard to find the time for a doctor’s visit. Planning ahead is key! You’ll get more out of your appointment by not having spent all day on that last meeting at work. Or sitting in traffic after taking care of errands around town with kids.
Although our school ends on Thursdays. My children spend their Fridays doing activities they otherwise cannot do during the week. And they often reject the idea of spending their Friday doing anything else. So adding those visits to their school days is easier for my kids and super simple to slide into the weekly schedule.
TIMING for APPOINTMENTS
Before blocking it took a lot to plan a trip to see our favorite Doctor. And well, I’ve found that putting my health first has been one way I’m able to take control of my weekly plans. Knowing when and how much time we need to accomplish that task can be something else to stress about. Therefore, I decided that allowing my kids and me an hour to get to the Doctor’s made things so much easier. My time block for health visits usually lasts about 2-4hrs with multiple children. Therefore I block out 3 hours for doctor’s appointments.
Making a generalized time block for health visits can help to optimize your schedules. Especially if you add that health time block to your weekly or daily schedules. It adds just a little relief knowing that you’ve already planned for a certain length of time. I know that when I make time to plan my weekly schedule. I feel confident that we can make it to and from those appointments without anxiety, anger, or tears!
I hope that this may help you in your endeavors and make your life easier! It has certainly made my life more manageable. Time blocking really can help you plan your life better. And help you accomplish your goals. I challenge you to write out the time blocks you need and use them for a week! Let me know your thoughts or questions on Instagram!
Learn to Time Block to make your daily schedule simple and easy