Block your time

Every SlightEdger probably already know how to block time. All in all we have our daily disciplines and they have to be done somewhen.
But I have an outstanding recent experience of time blocking. I committed to work, fully concentrated, at least 3 and a half hours a day. I’m a database administrator, my work is similar to fireman’s job – I work when there is a catastrophe. The rest are just maintenance tasks. When everything works fine there is little to do.
The results: I completely cleared my work-to-do list within two weeks. Things which hung there for months were done within days. No kidding.
I found also my very bad “escape” habit. I don’t like to focus on single task for too long. Especially on the one I don’t find interesting. And then I open browser. Or check my mailbox. Or switch to another, shorter task, so I can feel I accomplished something. Or go to toilet. Or eat a carrot. Or… The list go on and on. I found new resources of creativity in this quest for distractions ;)
And the solution is…. to block my time. I was aware I have to spend 210 minutes on work. No way around. The faster I would do it, the faster I could switch to more engaging tasks. So I focused, put my whole effort into work related tasks. You do what you must to do. It is really as simple as that. Block your time. Commit yourself. Focus till you finish.
It was really short term case of applying Slight Edge. Within two weeks I had all big things done. I think I’ll transform it into a real SE discipline. After 2 weeks of finishing my commitment the work-to-do list is growing again. Luckily this time there is no issue sitting there for months ;) It seems as I have to repeat it again and again and again. Each month I suppose.
As I mentioned before time blocking applies not only to monumental tasks, but also to daily disciplines. It is comfortable, when you can reserve specific time for them. It is really helpful if you do the same thing every day at the same time. For example first thing in the morning I always work out listening to some motivational/educational record. I meditate on my personal mission statement afterwards.
And that’s as far as can go with my hectic schedule. Shift work do this to your planning. But seriously, my morning disciplines are easiest for me to maintain, because I have always time blocked for them.