I’m always looking for ways to better manage my time, and it seems the more simple the method the more likely I’ll use it. One of the simplest and most effective methods I use for managing my time is $1.29 egg timer.
I recently posted an article about ‘going dark’ and how I would lose track of time while on my iPhone or laptop. I had attempted to use a built in timer on both devices, and even downloaded another electronic timer that would pop up on my screen. One or two clicks later and I was right back on. I found I needed something that wasn’t electronic, so I went to the dollar store and purchased an egg timer for $1.29. (Shouldn’t it have been a dollar at the dollar store?)
The egg timer is a clunky device that winds, ticks, and rings. While it is not the best device for all tasks (e.g. writing, reading, brain surgery) it is great for ten minute projects. Set the timer and get to work. The ticking keeps you focused and the annoying ring startles you to move on to the next task.
My wife thought I was a little off my rocker (and I am, I truly am) when I started using the timer, but she soon saw my results. She uses it with our children. (I know…I admit I am just a big kid too.) Awhile back our daughters were taking super-duper long showers. While we encourage cleanliness, we also encourage ecological awareness and lower water bills. Voila! The egg timer. They weren’t thrilled at first, but it worked.
Some of my favorite egg timer activities include: internet searches, race the clock with house hold chores like the dishes or folding laundry, ten-minute breaks from writing, checking email, making my to-do list, paying bills, and social network updates.
• Take a break. The egg timer is a great way to keep your break from going a little long.
• Beat the clock. There are many chores that just aren’t fun but necessary. Race your timer and increase your productivity. (This really works great with laundry.)
• Take a bite out of a BIG job. There are often projects that just appear too overwhelming. Set the timer and get started. Yes, I know you won’t finish, but you will feel better you started, something will have gotten done, and the job will not seem nearly as overwhelming.
• Set Deadlines. There are some projects that you can just spend too much time on. I can be a perfectionist with my correspondence. When I write a letter I alway want it to read like Shakespeare and quite often that is over doing it. The egg timer is great for deadlines.
Does it have to be an egg timer? No, you can use the timer on your stove, microwave, or watch, but for some reason that inexpensive egg timer marvel beats them all hands down. Try it and see if you agree.
Do you have any new uses for the egg timer and time management? I would love to read them. Please comment on this blog and let me know.
Kelly Croy is a chalk artist and professional speaker. His presentations have entertained and amazed audiences across the nation including corporations, schools, churches, conferences, and numerous other venues where people come together to be entertained and improve their lives. Please consider booking Kelly for your next event.