Episode 10

Time Management and Staying Focused Throughout the Work Day


May 18th, 2020

1 hr 5 mins 13 secs

Your Hosts

About this Episode

In this episode of the Hello Blink Show, Harris and Shawn share tips and techniques on staying focused and productive throughout the day. Working from home can offer a great deal of flexibility, but it comes with the added responsibility of managing your own time. Finding motivation can be a tough challenge when family, chores, and social media vie for your attention.

Specifically, Harris discusses the importance of food and exercise over other time management techniques and Shawn weighs in regarding the necessity of rest. The two then give insights on various methods of managing a daily schedule and keeping to-do lists before concluding with some recommended reading material.

One Powerful Quotation:

  • 26:46 - Harris: “You can use Pomodoro...and whatever other kind of system you want, if you’re not giving your body the nutrients that it needs,...I don’t really care about the system [that you use].”

Key Topics:

  • 1:15 - Harris opens the show by talking about how he is helping his clients navigate the Coronavirus stimulus and loan programs as well as how he is working with the Make4Covid group in Colorado that is making personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers.

  • 3:20 - Shawn discusses his recent machine learning project and making his Arduino course free.

  • 7:30 - Shawn talks about motivation to work while at an office versus at home.

  • 10:06 - Harris and Shawn talk about the illusion of looking busy in an office environment.

  • 12:44 - Shawn discusses the problem with distractions and his own personal experiences in understanding his own daily rhythm.

  • 15:31 - Harris gives an account of how he handles motivation throughout the day.

  • 17:47 - Shawn talks about the importance of choosing and structuring tasks to keep focus.

  • 19:07 - Shawn and Harris discuss how nutrition, exercise, caffeine, and alcohol affect focus and motivation. They conclude that diet, exercise, and sleep is more important than any time management program.

  • 28:56 - Shawn discusses supplementing vitamins for helping with focus.

  • 34:01 - A discussion about preventative medicine ensues.

  • 36:51 - Shawn asks Harris about his experience with a nutritionist and how it might be better than going to a doctor.

  • 39:58 - Shawn talks about the importance of getting rest, not just getting enough sleep but also taking time to deliberately abstain from work. Know how your body works!

  • 43:25 - Harris and Shawn discuss staying focused on a granular level: hour to hour. They share tips on various techniques ranging from calendar blocking, maintaining to-do lists, reminder apps, and personal Scrum.

  • 51:56 - Shawn talks about utilizing ultradian rhythms to be more productive and stay focused throughout the workday.

  • 53:23 - Harris and Shawn discuss the various merits and pitfalls of social media in their lines of work and how they affect productivity.

  • 55:56 - Shawn introduces two competing schools of thought: should you use the morning to tackle easy tasks or hard projects first?

List of Resources
Making It podcast
Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time by Jeff Sutherland and JJ Sutherland
Michael Hyatt: Why You Should Never Start With Your Most Difficult Task
Brian Tracy: Eat That Frog!
Rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson
Work Clean by Dan Charnas
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

Host Contact Information:
LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel
LinkedIn - Harris Kenny
Twitter - Shawn Hymel
Twitter - Harris Kenny

License Information:
“Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0
Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0

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