Last week, we discussed apps that our NYC Professional Organizer recommends for creating and curating your to-do list, but as we said, that’s only half the battle when it comes to time management. In order to truly use your time wisely, you must know how you are actually spending it, not just how it should be spent! Thus, our NYC Professional Organizer is back with another round of time management tips and apps for tracking your time.
Time Tracking Apps
While you may know how you’d LIKE to spend your time, your actual time log may not reflect your to do list. Tracking your time can reveal habits you weren’t even aware of – for instance, maybe you regularly take a 10 minute break to surf the web around 2 pm – that can help you manage your schedule more effectively. Additionally, you may find that you’re spending far too much time on low priority tasks, indicating that you may not be the best person to complete them.
- RescueTime: This application runs in the background on both your computer and mobile devices, tracking the time that you spend on various applications and websites. Additionally, it allows you to block websites that you find distracting and set up alerts when you’ve spent a certain amount of time on designated activities. At the end of the day, RescueTime will put together a report detailing how you spent your day. The plus here is that there is almost no effort on your part: just start it, set up any necessary alerts, and let it run. The downside is that you may need to do some additional analysis if you spend time on particular sites or programs for multiple projects.
- Toggl: This is an extremely simple, yet powerful time tracking app. It pairs a task log with a stop watch, allowing you to add tasks, start the clock, and then stop it when you’re done. While this does give you an extra step between tasks, it does give you a bit more flexibility than RescueTime and details down to the minute how much time is spent on each task as YOU define it.
While these tools are extremely useful, they’re only effective if used regularly. Test each app to find out which works best for you – or if you prefer pen and paper, try keeping a hand log. Remember, you must be comfortable with the tool that you use, so if you find that one is not sticking, move on to the next!
Need more help fitting in all your tasks so you have time for summer fun? Reach out to our NYC Professional Organizer. She’ll develop systems and time management tips customized for your needs and habits to help you work smarter!