Living in today’s modern world in a big city, in the field of services (I don’t know how many of the readers of this blog, if any, work on a farm or in a fabric), each of you must, more or less, do the following categories of tasks, in order to be independent. This is not dependent on how much money you earn, what you do or what position you have. In order to keep a certain degree of sustainable independence, anyone must deal with these:
1. Tasks sustaining life:
Cooking – even if you use semi-prepared foods, you still have to at least prepare them in such a manner that they are eatable from your plate. This takes about 15 minutes to 1 h a day. Even at the restaurant, you have to wait for the order to come. Even at a fast food, you have to wait in line in order to be served.
Eating – even if you do it while driving, going to work, watching a TV show or the computer, it still requires time: at least 30 minutes a day. At most, 1 h 30 (assuming you have 3-4 healthy meals a day).
Bathing, showering, personal hygiene, time spent in the bathroom. For men, at least 15 minutes a day. For women, at least 45 minutes a day.
Sleeping. At least 7 hours a day. At most, 9 hours a day. Add to that at least 15 minutes per day for the process of falling asleep/waking up. At most, add 30 minutes. All that is more than 30 minutes a day is pathologic.
2. Tasks sustaining health
Exercising, doing some sort of physical movement. In order to keep a healthy body, at least 30 minutes a day. At most, 1 h a day (who wants to exercise more, will do it as a hobby). This can be done by walking, jogging, fitness, weightlifting, gymnastics, kinetotherapy, etc. No time in exercising leads to even more time wasted each day on anxiety, depression and time-wasting behaviors, not to mention eventual sickening.
Breaks. Time off your desk, off your job, when you do something refreshing like looking at the window, closing your eyes, doing eye gymnastics, whatever. At least 15 minutes per day, added from all the sequences of time throughout the day, leaving away the time spent on going to the bathroom and eating (those might also be considered breaks).
3. Organizing tasks.
Domestic housework, cleaning, washing, organizing stuff, throwing out the garbage, dressing, undressing, cleaning the laundry, ironing, desk cleaning, all the little stuff, which added to one another take time. The more organized you are, the more time you save by knowing where everything is. At least 25-30 minutes a day.
Planning, management, monitoring, evaluation of tasks, goals, meetings and resources. Even if you delegate, it still takes time to communicate instructions and making calls. You may do it with Google Calendar, on your smartphone, on an old-time agenda or in an Excel file. If you have a secretary, it still takes time to communicate with her. This should take at least 10 minutes a day and at most 30 minutes per day.
Banking & accountability, financial matters, paying bills. Let’s say you use internet banking and you just count your money and you go one or two places to physically pay your bills. This takes at least 10 minutes per day, on average.
Acquisitions. It doesn’t matter if you go to the market, to the hypermarket, do shopping in the mall or on the internet. You still need time to choose, to compare, to test, to probe, before you buy, Even if you don’t do that daily, in average this can take up as much as 15-30 minutes per day.
All sorts of computer tasks: checking your e-mail & FB, opening & turning off the computer, opening & closing software programs, dealing with resets & restarts, logging in & logging out, (dis)connecting USB devices – all these little tiny things that take time while you’re not actually working. At least 15 minutes a day if you don’t waste time.
4. Education & self-education.
Even if you’re not a student at a faculty or if you’re not looking for a master / Ph.D. degree, you still have to learn. Even if you’re doing a google search or read a Wikipedia article. Here, I put also: video training, documentaries, internet research, news aggregators, audiobooks, e-books, printed books, magazines, blogs, foreign language training. At least 1 hour a day. If you spend less time on any of these activities, it means you’ll be out of a job really soon.
Let’s say you only have a meet with one friend two hours a week. That translates into about 15 minutes a day. Add to that the time spent for socializing on phone, YM, FB and face to face if you work with colleagues. It takes at least 30 minutes a day. If you don’t have friends to talk to, it will take more time, as you will end up frustrated & desperate for communication, in which case you’ll end up spending more time longing for this. And yes, this includes talking to your parents. So, at least 30 minutes a day, on average. At most, 1 hour a day (presuming you don’t have a sentimental partner with which you spend a lot more time or which you live with).
It doesn’t matter if you’re driving, using the subway or the bus, to go everywhere out of your house means time spent on the road. Of course, unless you work all the time from home and you have a butler bringing you everything on a platter. The advantage, if you use just one or two means of public transportation is that during that time you can actually do something else (especially learning, through audiobooks and reading). Anyway, this takes at least 30 minutes a day. At most, it can even take 3 hours, but in this case, you’d definitely better use this time for studying or talking on the phone, otherwise, it’s just wasted time.
All these take up at least 13 hours a day. That means, if you don’t waste time in any of these departments, you should have, on average, at most 11 hours a day, time in which to do 3 main things:
1. earning money – either as an employee, a freelancer, an administrator, a manager or an entrepreneur.
2. hobbies & leisure – exercising a talent, having a boyfriend/girlfriend, watching a movie, listening to music, going to a party, dancing,
3. any other projects or activities which may satisfy your needs of developing & contribution: going to Church, volunteering, blogging, participating in training, developing a business, etc.
The less money you earn, the less time you will have on #2 and #3. This doesn’t mean the more money you make, the more time you will have.
Now, for those of you who want to do more than go to work, have a partner and make kids, handling all these hours makes the difference between mediocrity and performance.
If you perceive your timeline [ro, blog] out of your body than it means you have a Meta Time [ro, blog] perception, which makes it easy for you to handle your tasks during the time. If you, on the other hand, have an In Time [ro, blog] perception, this article might have been a very clouded, silly idea for you and it doesn’t matter how many of these you will read, it won’t make any difference.
If this article has incited you to ask yourself some questions, please also consider these:
1. In which of these departments do you spend more time than needed?
2. What emotional benefits do you have by spending more time than needed in any category? Are they security, diversity, signification, connection, development or contribution? Check Anthony Robbins’ pyramid of emotional needs.
3. How else could you satisfy those emotions in a more time-effective and aware manner?
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