On today’s podcast, Russ teaches Mika (and us) how to time block. Today’s episode is all about managing time. So what is “Timeblocking?” As Russ describes it, it works like a budget does for money, and its all about breaking your time into categories. Timeblocking helps a busy, ever changing schedule by not only incorporating...
Episode #55: Russ Teaches Timeblocking
Today’s episode is all about managing time. So what is “Timeblocking?” As Russ describes it, it works like a budget does for money, and its all about breaking your time into categories.
Timeblocking helps a busy, ever changing schedule by not only incorporating time for meetings, appointments and events – but also building in time for more fluid tasks like creation, self care, and family.
This approach to scheduling not only helps Russ manage his business, but also helps Mika use it for more home based tasks like balancing the girls schedules and dance classes.
In this episode, you will learn:
• Why time for yourself is important to schedule
• What is “buffer time”
• Why you should keep one calendar for everything
• Is Sunday the first or last day of the week?
Mentioned in this episode:
• Russ Perry on Instagram
• Mika Perry on Instagram
• The Sober Entrepreneur by Russ Perry
• The Russ Perry Show
• Do Less by Kate Northrup
• Tony Robbins Podcast – Becoming Michael Phelps Episode
• GTBH Episode #52: Visualizing Your Goals With Vision Boards
• Hummus Packs from Costco
• Tan Luxe Spray Tan: The Water / Wonder Oil
• GTBH Episode #53: Beauty Routines with Mika
• The Best in Tent Camping: Arizona
• “Regulate” – Warren G
• Mika’s Blog – Travel Files: Disneyland Tips
• GTBH Episode #28: Understanding the “Core Four”
• Google Calendar
Do you have questions, comments or suggestions for this show? Send us an email at Hello@GoodtoBeHomePodcast.com!
Russ Perry: I’m Russ Perry.
Mika Perry: And I’m Mika Perry, and you’re listening to Good To Be Home.
Russ Perry: Good To Be Home is a weekly exploration of entrepreneurship, family, marriage, sobriety, and how we balance our business and life.
Mika Perry: From our family to yours, thanks for joining us and welcome to our home.
Russ Perry: Hey, everyone. Welcome to this episode of Good To Be Home. I’m your cohost Russ Perry.
Mika Perry: And I am Mika Perry.
Russ Perry: Mika, I am excited. I get to do some training today.
Mika Perry: All right. Ross is literally pumped over there on the other side.
Russ Perry: That’s right. I am training on a concept called time blocking. This is something I introduced at PICKLECON, our conference we just had, and it is a tool. I didn’t invent the tool, but I’ve made it really cool and really easy to use. I’ve modified it, so this is how I manage my life with my time and my calendar. It’s a system I’ve been evolving over the years and something that I’m really pumped about. I’m going to train you, Mika, so you’re going to have to tell me if I do a good job.
And for the listeners, there are some visual pieces to this as well as a template that I’ve created so you can actually go to the website, GoodToBeHomepodcast.com/timeblocking, one word, and you can get those items so you can come along for the training ride as you’re listening.
Mika Perry: I love that we have visuals and printables to go along with this. So good. I’m excited. I kind of generally and naturally do time blocking, but I’m really excited to kind of get solid on this on air with you guys and share a little bit about how I implement it in my life as well.
Russ Perry: Great. Well right now is the block of time dedicated for our weekly list of what we’re reading, listening, eating, and loving. As always, Mika, please take us away.
Mika Perry: Okay. Reading, still reading. Do Less by Kate Northrup. Go to last week’s episode and you can hear all about this book. I mean, you guys-
Russ Perry: Hey, transparency.
Mika Perry: Transparency.
Russ Perry: Real life.
Mika Perry: Yup. Okay. Listening. I listened to a Tony Robbins podcast, which was an interview of Michael Phelps. It was called Becoming Michael Phelps. He talked about his journey becoming the most decorated Olympian, but what I got out of this podcast episode was the certainty that he had in his life. As I’ve listen to podcast interviews of high performing, mostly athletes, they have the certainty by visualizing what they are going to do before they actually do it. That solidifies the plan and the results.
This reminded me when I was listening to it of our episode 52 on vision boarding, what has made vision boards and other strategies that we have used successful in making things happen in our lives that want to have happen. It’s because we have the sense of certainty. A vision board solidifies that. It creates that certainty that you’re going to do it, this is what you want to do. And I just, I love that. So that is kind of the connection I made in listening to this episode.
Russ Perry: That’s awesome. Did Michael Phelps listen to our episode?
Mika Perry: No.
Russ Perry: Not yet. Maybe he doesn’t listen.
Mika Perry: Here’s the thing, is he’s local and we have a couple mutual friends, and as I was listening to this episode was like, “Bucket list item. I would love to have him come on the podcast,” because he has gone through depression and has had struggles in his life that he has overcome and is very transparent about it and is now turning it around and trying to help others going through the same thing. And that’s our mission as well. So I love that.
Russ Perry: Let’s visualize it.
Mika Perry: Let’s visualize it. You’re going to have a big picture of Michael Phelps on my vision board.
Russ Perry: Nice.
Mika Perry: Maybe you should do a Good To Be Home podcast vision board.
Russ Perry: Okay, let’s do it.
Mika Perry: Of what we want. Great idea, Mika. Okay. Eating, hummus packs from Costco. If you’re a Costco fan like I am. I went to Costco on Mother’s Day. That’s how much I love Costco.
Russ Perry: You took a picture in front of it.
Mika Perry: Yeah, I had the best time. Okay, so the hummus packs, they are individually packed. Hummus packs, I dipped cucumbers into them today as a little mid snack, mid morning snack. And what I love about these is that I have a tray in our fridge, our French door, subzero fridge where you pull it out. I always keep our snacks, they’re healthy snacks. The reason I create this store is to encourage healthy snacking, in particular with you and I, but also Maddox, our 13 year old, so that they’re easily accessible.
Reese really has kind of gone onboard with the hummus thing, so I really love seeing that. Instead of eating just like straight up crackers, like dipping some veggies or almond … not almond milk, almond flour crackers into them. And anyways, hummus packs.
Russ Perry: And I will say too, for all of us out there who have problems eating the entire tub of Hummus in one sitting, like I know it’s a common problem.
Mika Perry: Oh, like not trying to get through, but that you do eat a whole tub.
Russ Perry: Yeah, like you’re like, “Oh, man. I ate that whole thing of hummus again. This is nice control-
Mika Perry: So this is portion control?
Russ Perry: System that I’ve discovered for all of you out there.
Mika Perry: Russ loves hummus.
Russ Perry: Oh, my gosh. I could eat it very day.
Mika Perry: Finally, loving, Tan Luxe Wonder Oil. So if you have followed me on Instagram or have listened even to this podcast before, you will have heard about my favorite self tanning product called Tan Luxe. I am not sponsored. They’re not sponsoring this Good To Be Home podcast. They just, I don’t know. I just love this product so much and I always just want to share those finds with you guys. I’m a sharer.
Anyways, I’ve been to devotee of their The Water, it’s a spray called The Water, for a few years now, but recently tried the Wonder oil. I mentioned this in my beauty episode, the Q&A solo episode I did that I was trying it, and now I’m here to follow up on that and report back that I am loving it. So it is a roll on oil that is in a glass bottle and it spreads really well. It feels luxurious, it smells good. The bonus is that you put it on and you rub it in with your hands. That’s what the instructions said, and I was a little bit leery. I was like, “Oh, man, I’m using my hands. I’m going to have tan palms,” and I did that and washed it and then it was fine. My hands were fine. So it worked so well. It was even and moisturized, you guys. I didn’t get on my sheets at night. Just so good, so loving it.
Russ Perry: [inaudible] wasn’t [inaudible] on the carpet that one day.
Mika Perry: No, makeup got on my carpet.
Russ Perry: Oh, okay.
Mika Perry: Yeah, on our carpet.
Russ Perry: Got it. Wow. That’s so awesome. I love that oil.
Mika Perry: Good. Glad you like it. You’re welcome to use it anytime.
Russ Perry: Thank you, sweetie. What am I reading? A little book I snuck into the Costco cart on your mother’s Day trip is The Best Tent Camping Book, The Arizona Edition. So I’m a want to be camper, and maybe go once or twice a year, but I liked this book cause I want to look through it with the girls and us pick places to go to together, because they really do like going camping and it’s a fun time together.
Mika Perry: Reece especially.
Russ Perry: Reese’s, yeah, she’s likes them a lot.
Mika Perry: I do not.
Russ Perry: You do not. Mika’s actually sworn off camping like for good.
Mika Perry: For good.
Russ Perry: Forever.
What am I listening to? It’s an Oldie but a goodie, Regulate by Warren G.
Mika Perry: That is a good one. So good. (singing) How old were you when it came out? Fifth grade?
Russ Perry: I don’t know. One year old, I don’t know. I don’t know how old this song is.
Mika Perry: Fourth grade, fifth grade I think.
Russ Perry: Yeah. See, I didn’t get into hip hop until later because there was no hip hop radio stations I could listen to, and the one that came out was kind of bad reception, 92.3.
Mika Perry: We lived in Tucson together.
Russ Perry: We did.
Mika Perry: KRQ.
Russ Perry: That was like top 40.
Mika Perry: Warren G was on it.
Russ Perry: Was it?
Mika Perry: Yes.
Russ Perry: Well, I was an alternative rock kid. I really think my college roommates for getting me into the hip hop and I’ve never looked back. So the great song.
What am I eating? Onigiri, your mom makes it. This is a kind of like a snack food. I don’t know how to describe it.
Mika Perry: No.
Russ Perry: Or like a appetizer item?
Mika Perry: No.
Russ Perry: What is it? What’s the category? Breakfast?
Mika Perry: Okay. No. So it’s a lunch item.
Russ Perry: Oh, okay.
Mika Perry: So onigiri is a rice ball. And you know that Japanese rice it’s like … a lot of Americans call it sticky rice because it is sticky. Short grain rice has like kind of that stickiness. So what you do in Japan, it’s a very common lunchbox item, onigiri, which is rice balls, and you kind of wet your hands and you make it into like this triangle shape and then you fill it with anything from like pickled plums to salmon to Bonito flakes, all sorts of different like fillings. So kids will have these in their lunchboxes. He can also buy them like in the convenience stores. So it’s a quick meal is what it is. Well and-
Russ Perry: And you love it.
Mika Perry: I love eating them.
Russ Perry: My mom makes it, and whenever she comes to visit she makes them for us.
Mika Perry: Now what am I loving, loving? I’m loving Disneyland. We went there recently. We took Reese for a surprise birthday. And, I don’t know, I feel like I’ve talked about it before, but I read the biography on Walt Disney. I went to Walt Disney … or not Walt Disney world, but Disney land, and it just, it is so well engineered and designed. As a creative, I just love every part of it from many, many levels. From enjoying it with the family to the performances to even-
Mika Perry: Entrepreneur, like the …
Russ Perry: Yeah, like watching the trash guys roll in after the parade and their system that they’re using and the tech and all of that, so.
Mika Perry: The logistic systems. Yeah.
Russ Perry: I want to propose us doing a whole episode on the Perry’s guide to Disneyland, because we have it down.
Mika Perry: Yeah, and I have done a blog post. I’ve done two now on Disneyland, but if you’re not a blog reader and you prefer to hear it on Good To Be Home, that’s not a bad idea.
Russ Perry: Let us know. Send an email to hello@GoodToBeHomepodcast.com if you want to hear our ultimate strategy and guide, because we now have done it several times and for out of towners … Now, if you live local, you got it down in a different way. But for out of towners, for Disney Land specifically.
Mika Perry: Yeah. We haven’t been to Disney World.
Russ Perry: Not yet.
Mika Perry: Not yet.
Russ Perry: Time blocking. Let’s get into it. So time blocking, I will just start with the best analogy I could give for time blocking. It is: I look at time like money, both in a literal and figurative sense. Time is something we have a finite amount of, and if you do not have a plan for it, it is easily wasted. You can easily waste it. Have you ever, Mika, gotten to the end of the day and been like, “Where did the time, go?”
Mika Perry: Yup.
Russ Perry: I bet you entered into that day without a clear plan-
Mika Perry: Yeah, yeah.
Russ Perry: Maybe for the sake of this training just be like, yeah, absolutely right.
Mika Perry: Yeah, absolutely, Russ. Yes.
Russ Perry: So the concept of time blocking, as I’ve interpreted it … Now, you can probably find other blogs or books or whatever on it, but I look at it as really the containers of my week, and I look at how do I plan out when do I want to do things, when the best time of day is that I want to do things, and then I start to lay out a framework, like a blueprint for the week.
I find, though, that it’s important to be very cognizant of this on a week by week basis. It’s impossible to have every day be exactly the same, every week to be exactly the same, especially if you’re married with kids. Oh, you also have a business, you have a partner who’s doing kids’ businesses activities. It’s just not practical. But you can combat the chaos by getting clear on what is it you’re committing to, what times of day. This is effectively what time blocking is. It’s coming up with a plan.
I’ll talk about how that plan changes and what you can do, but I have been doing this now for over two years, and this year, 2019, I’m really getting out there to teach this to more people, because I think it’s very, very valuable. It’s kind of going to be one of my things that I’m going to be teaching. Do you have any questions so far?
Mika Perry: You’re doing great.
Russ Perry: The audience, the learning audience.
Mika Perry: You’re doing great, keep going.
Russ Perry: All right, so just like having a budget with your money, you want to have a plan for your time. So these are the very, very practical ways that I go about creating a time blocking plan. Step number one is create the categories. So going off into a slight tangent, inside of life we’ve talked about core four: body, being, balance, and business. But these categories don’t necessarily work well for time blocking because those are more about your life and the way you want to grow, but I have a different set of categories that I’ve created for my time.
The first block, and this is kind of in priority order, the first block is self, yourself, time for yourself. This could be time in prayer, meditation, self care. I put my hair cut in this category, fitness, anything that you do for you. That has to come first. That’s category number one.
Category number two, family, everything related to your family, if you have one. This could be date nights, this could be taking the kids to school, homework practices, family events, traditions, we have Friday pizza night. All of those kinds of things fall into the family category for you. If you’re single, this could be time looking for a new family, trying to date, whatever it might be.
Mika Perry: And also spending time with your, you know, extended family.
Russ Perry: Immediate family.
Mika Perry: Yeah.
Russ Perry: The relationships that matter the most to you.
The next category I have is plan, so no time blocking strategy is possible unless you’re actually working on it weekly. This isn’t a lot of time, but it is time that you actually have to put into your calendar.
Mika Perry: I like that you recognize that.
Russ Perry: Next is what should be the most, the largest block of time inside of your time blocking plan, and that is your creation time or create time. This is a category where you are doing the thing that you are the best at. Often it’s the thing in which you make money, how you create wealth or value, whether that’s measured by a paycheck or measured by something else, you are focused on that thing. Very, very important though that you make sure that this is a time that you’re creating for you, you’re being the creator out there.
If you’re being asked to do things like, Mika, you’re a room mom for Reese and the teacher asks you to cut out a hundred statue of Liberty flags or I don’t know, whatever. That’s not-
Mika Perry: Last time was hammers and nails out of construction paper.
Russ Perry: That does not count as create. That’s creating for someone else.
The next category is manage. This is the category when you are working with others or for others doing things for others. This morning I was working on a job description for a new hire we’re making. That’s the managing time. It’s all of the professional things that you’re doing, but it’s like projects with others, creating with others, planning, organizing-
Mika Perry: It seems very much where the to do list would live.
Russ Perry: Could, yeah, for sure. The to do list.
Mika Perry: Emails.
Russ Perry: Emails, all of that kind of stuff go in here. This is your second biggest category, but it’s also the category you’ll want to go to the easiest. It’s like the default category that we always go to, and what I notice when people are first starting this is that their whole day is manage. There’s actually no creation time at all involved in it, and what ends up happening is then they try to do the creation at nights and weekends and then there’s no self-
Mika Perry: Or family or plan, or your last category.
Russ Perry: Last category, buffer time, so buffer time is exactly that. It’s time where you have no plan. There’s nothing planned for it, and I’ll get to when we use buffer time in a minute. Any questions, Mrs. Perry? From the audience?
Mika Perry: I think you’re good.
Russ Perry: Okay.
Mika Perry: Yeah, you’ve done a good job.
Russ Perry: So your categories could be the same as mine and we’ll have a template that’s available, so you can just copy and paste, but maybe you have some other categories. Maybe you have a different balances to those categories, but if you’re doing this for the first time … like whenever I teach something and it’s new, just go with what’s being taught. Don’t try to hack it or change it. When you want to change or adjust these things, do it after you’ve used this plan for a while. Just make it a little bit easier for you.
Mika Perry: Yeah, I honestly, I’m thinking of different things that I do and they can all fall into this category, right of self, family plan, create, manage, and buffer.
Russ Perry: Now, I will add a sub category of manage that’s really helpful if you’re working with teams is meetings. So I actually have a sub, it says meetings, but it falls under the manage umbrella where my team can automatically book meetings with me without having to ask, “Russ, when can we meet?” That might be something for you. Not necessarily for everyone.
So the next thing I’ll do is I’ll actually get out a piece of paper or I will go to a calendar app, go to the week view. I recommend you start your week on Monday. So all calendar Apps, you can go to the settings and change what is the week start day and you can go to Monday. Everywhere else in the world starts their week on Monday. For whatever reason, US calendars always set to start on Sunday, which I think is dumb because Sunday’s the last day of the week.
Mika Perry: I don’t think so.
Russ Perry: Well, I do.
Mika Perry: I think it’s the first.
Russ Perry: I think so. I go to Monday, I set it to Monday. Don’t change the plan [crosstalk]-
Mika Perry: Okay, sorry.
Russ Perry: You can edit it later. There’s a reason why. Then I print out a week view and then I get a pencil and I start blocking out these blocks. There’s nothing specific in them, so I’ll go in order. When’s all the self? When’s all the family? When’s all the create? When’s all the manage? When’s all the buffer time?
Mika Perry: Now these categories, I notice now that you’ve put almost like in an order of priority in a way.
Russ Perry: Yeah, yeah. Now, the one rule for these, these can be varying times. Like for example, your self times are going to be usually the amount of time for the activity. So if it’s a 20 minute meditation, a 30 minute haircut, a half an hour or an hour workout, that’s the amount of time you have. For create the minimum amount of time for a create block is 90 minutes. The recommended amount of time for a create block is three hours. So you actually have a large chunk of your day dedicated to this.
As for the meetings category, no more than two hours at a time, and you just kinda play around with it. The family, the self, all of those things will have various times and depending on the activities. Buffer, always two hours, just two hours. So you kind of work through this. Again, if you’re just hearing this, you’re driving, you’re not taking notes. In the blog post, we’ll have all the details and rules on it so you can just follow it. But using those rules I’ll then go and I will create out my week.
What I’ll find is by the time I get to my meeting there’s not a lot of space available. So what you actually do to then create this is you draw out and color code it inside of your paper calendar, so when you’re done planning this on paper you have a visual representation of the time blocks of the week. Are we good?
Mika Perry: Following. I will say I will agree with you on the create part. That three hours is ideal, because whenever I’ve gotten into the flow, into like a state of creation, usually like I’ll start at like noon and I’m done at like 2:33 like, “Whoa, it’s done,” and it was in the zone. It’s like you need a good chunk of time to create something significant that aligns with what you’re passionate with and what you’re skilled at that’s what you want to focus on creating.
Russ Perry: Now, specific to that block in addition to the time constraints, I will say minimum of two of those in a week, preferably three or four. So three is ideal, four is like you got organized. If you can have four creation blocks a week, like you’re really dialed in.
The next thing is we gotta digitize this. No great tool will be great. Being on a piece of paper you’re going to lose. So the next step is to go into your calendaring app and 100% recommend Google calendars, multi-platform, mobile optimized. Everything can be on there. I have one calendar for everything. So we joke inside the office, I’ll come in and one of my team members will be, “Russ, how was date night last week,” or, “Did the dentist go well?” Because I have everything in one calendar. I don’t really have much to hide so it’s all in there, and you will then copy this visual calendar into your current week calendar.
Now, this could look kind of messy. What you’re not doing is you’re not creating a separate calendar that’s like your time block calendar. You’re literally, the one you currently use you’ll go in and start adding these things. So if you have a lot of stuff already planned in your week, this is going to look kind of ugly, but just bare with me.
Now, there’s very specifics to this. What you will actually do is each block you have in there, you will add and you’ll set that item to repeat weekly, but every week, not every day. So say you have, you know, five workouts a week. Don’t repeat it inside of the week. If you work out Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday; Monday has an item, Tuesday has a separate item, Wednesday as a separate item, Thursday as a separate item.
Mika Perry: So you’re repeating four things.
Russ Perry: You’re repeating four items, and this is important for the planning phase. So when I’m done, I will see a replication of my time blocking calendar. It might not be as pretty with colors because I know there’s some limitations there, but I will see all of these items listed and each one of those items is set to repeat weekly at that same day and time. Still good?
Mika Perry: Following, because I do this naturally.
Russ Perry: Okay, great. Good. I’m pretending, but you got to be telling like you’re a student, you’re listening for like if I’m not making sense.
Mika Perry: Fascinating.
Russ Perry: Okay, good.
Mika Perry: Is that good?
Russ Perry: Good. So once the frame is digitized-
Mika Perry: It actually is fascinating [crosstalk].
Russ Perry: So once the frame is digitized, then comes kind of the tough part. I notice whenever I’d make a new frame for my time blocking I have to go at least four to six weeks out before I can actually start using it. So just because you’ve all of a sudden created this awesome, perfect plan for your life doesn’t mean it can actually happen-
Mika Perry: Because you’ve already planned meetings and appointments, and-
Russ Perry: You’ve already planned out. Exactly. So what I’ll do is I’ll start to go out as soon as I can where things start to loosen up, there’s not as many items, and I will then that point when I have things I need to do, meetings I need to have, commitments I need to make, I will start booking them into those specific blocks. So there is lag time from your amazing plan. Now what I will then do in the final piece of this as the weekly review is every Sunday, the last day of the week if you use the view that I recommended, you will go to the next week and see how you can optimize your week. So, can I move something into a meeting time block? Can I, you know, make sure my date nights are following this plan.
Mika Perry: So you’re consolidating and kind of rounding up.
Russ Perry: Exactly. Then I go and I plan out what those time blocks actually are that aren’t planned. So if I see a create in my Tuesday morning, I will on Sunday night decide what am I going to work on that day. If I see meetings with no meetings already booked on it or managing things, I will book in what I’m going to work on. And you will go through and fill in the details of your time blocking calendar on what are the specifics that aren’t actually filled out already. If you get good at this, you’ll actually, some of those things, like I have weekly meetings with my team during those blocks and we know every other week we’re talking about marketing or every other week we’re talking about sales on the manage blocks.
So that’s the like adjustment and planning. Then there’s always the things that you just won’t fit: a vacation, a important client meeting, a doctor’s appointment, a surgery, a performance or whatever. No plan is ever going to be perfect from week to week, but what you do is you try to still keep that inside of your week. So let’s say we have a, you know, next week or coming up soon, Maddie’s getting promoted from eighth grade and that’s a Thursday afternoon event middle of the day. I’m definitely going to be there so what I’ll do is take those items and I’ll find space inside the calendar to put them. I just won’t delete them.
Mika Perry: So what you had originally planned on Thursday afternoon or whatever, you’re now moving that to a different part.
Russ Perry: Right. Sometimes that means I have to move things to the evening or the mornings or move outside my perfect calendar, but it ends up giving me certainty that I get it all done every single week. When you don’t have a plan, what ends up happening is that you don’t do it, but then you don’t actually decide when it is you’re going to make it up. So Sundays is when I’ll review that and okay, I have to adjust things. I don’t just delete it. I figure out the new time.
Mika Perry: You don’t cancel it. You just move it.
Russ Perry: Exactly. That’s the system. It’s very straightforward. There’s a lot that goes into using it and doing it, and I’ll get into a quick few best practices here in a second. But the biggest, biggest concept is like once you have this plan, you have to use it. You can’t just fit things in. You can’t just say, “Yes, I’ll go do this,” or, “Sure I can work on this,” then do it during a time that isn’t designated for it. The whole plan falls apart if you don’t commit to using this time blocking calendar that you’ve set for yourself.
Mika Perry: I think this brings up some discipline that you need to have in your life. Also, to say no to certain things because it doesn’t fit into this plan, so it helps you practice that. And to honor and protect your time and your priorities. I love that.
Russ Perry: And it’s not easy.
Mika Perry: It’s not, yeah.
Russ Perry: It’s so not easy, and the more people, the more things you have going on. But the discipline insane? No. Like, my team actually loves this because they don’t have to ask me when things are going on. Like, Mika, you can look into my calendar, you can see exactly when is everything happening, what’s going on, can I be at home or can we do this during the day? And you know what’s happening with it. So once you do create the discipline to follow it, it actually makes life easier because everyone around you and that you’re involved with has a clear roadmap of what your week is like.
Pro tips. If you can, the easiest way to follow this plan is to have someone else manage your calendar because then you’re not having to be like, you’re like, sorry, I don’t plan my calendar, I’m going to refer you to this person. And they’ll get it set up.
Mika Perry: Yeah, you don’t have the, “Well, okay fine. I’ll fit you in. Okay for you, like you know, okay, well maybe we can meet in the morning then and I’ll move this around,” yeah, then everything starts getting affected. I could see that
Russ Perry: So [inaudible]. So I have a manager, Nicole, she’s amazing. She manages my calendar and I draw the line short of like you and my mom to schedule things, but everyone else, it goes through Nicole, and I sort of joke. I’m like, I’m just, “She’s better. She’ll find times,” but also she’s like, “Okay, well the next time we can use that is in July.” People sometimes get put off, but it enables the integrity of the system to be maintained with it.
Another pro tip is about every 90 days it’s going to change.
Mika Perry: Why is that?
Russ Perry: So seasons of the year, seasons of life, school seasons, different than work seasons, different than summer seasons-
Mika Perry: It’s kind of … so quarterly.
Russ Perry: And different than holidays. Quarterly, yeah. But just remember that it does take time to implement, so if you’re looking at your summer plan for this, you’re going to do this for the summertime with all the different changes that are happening. Start now. Like this is, I mean, it’s practically summer so you need to be working on this now because it’s going to be three, four, or five weeks before I can really take into effect.
Mika Perry: Can I mention two things that just happened actually last night?
Russ Perry: Absolutely.
Mika Perry: That has to do with making sure you plan and use that Sunday time and use a Google calendar, and two, the testament to planning it out and laying it out and planning ahead. It’s actually three things that you’re talking about that I personally experienced last night. So Reese has dance on Tuesday nights and all of us moms were together last night. You know, before they were done with Dan’s chit chatting and talking and catching up. One, I realized that I had missed someone’s birthday party because there was a paper invitation and I didn’t put it in my Google calendar. I’ve never done this in my entire life where I forgot an invitation like that. I felt awful. I apologize profusely. I was like, that was so rude of me. But it was just like, you know what, Mika, you did not take the time to plan.
I’m sure it was when we were traveling on a weekend or something going on a Sunday, like a competition, but I did not adequately plan ahead and did not put it into my Google calendar, so I missed it. I felt awful. So that was just a reminder to me is like, Mika, you really have to have that discipline of that weekly, kind of like the week start checklist that I use. You know, I miss something.
Mistakes happen. She was super understanding and we all, will make mistakes like that in our lives. But that was a big one that I was like, “Oh, good reminder, Mika. Like, this is not good.” Second, is to lay it out on a plan. The schedule for dance next year already came out. It is this insane spreadsheet of the studio managing six different rooms with a million different classes throughout the entire week of different age levels and requirements that we have to do for company. It’s stressful. And looking at that, I could not visualize what that schedule would look like in our week.
What I did is I took that spreadsheet and created my own spreadsheet that was laid out left to right Monday through Sunday … or Monday through Saturday, because those are the days that we do available classes. I inputted the time. I created this whole spreadsheet while she was doing hip hop, actually, and put it all in to see, okay, what now? What is this going to frame out our after schools for next year for the fall? So when I came back to pick up Reese and all the moms were there, I said, “Hey, I made a spreadsheet.” They’re like, “You made a spreadsheet? Like, what the heck?”
I was like, “No, I needed to do this to visualize it, so I actually in the group text later on last night, I sent that spreadsheet to everyone then it like snowballed into this whole conversation of trying to plan for next year classes and everyone’s like stressed out. But it was a good reminder for me and everyone else that we need to like lay it out to see how it fits into our lives. Then the third thing is just planning ahead. We don’t have to register yet, we don’t have to register for some of these classes until August, but I’m planning it now because I want to know and need to know what our fall is going to look like because it’s going to take time to implement it and I want it to be there and ready for us when it actually happens.
Russ Perry: I love it. Great tips. So why am I so neurotic about time planning and blocking? I look at it as just like I like to do a lot of stuff, and I like to get things done, and I’d like to be involved in a lot of things. I’d like to be involved with my family. I like to be involved in work. I like to be involved with life and experiences, so I can’t think of a better system yet to get it all done, other than to make sure your time is well organized and well planned.
Mika Perry: Well, you know I’m a huge fan of organizing. I have used a little bit of time blocking and my calendar and my scheduling. I have themed out some days, so like Thursdays and Fridays I try to schedule my personal appointments during those days rather than Monday and Tuesday because Monday and Tuesday are kind of like my workdays then Wednesdays are a podcast days. Wednesday’s also when I do training, then I do weight training on Monday and Friday. I do self tanning on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I do masks on Sundays. I do a blog posts either Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, sometimes an additional one on the weekend. So in my Google calendar actually if you look at it … oh, I also do laundry on Mondays and Thursdays.
Cleaners come on Tuesdays, and I have it all there like in color. So my calendar, yours is all one calendar, one color. I, not encourage anyone deviating from Ross’s plan.
Russ Perry: You’re hacking my system and they haven’t even started it.
Mika Perry: I’m not hacking. I’m not hacking it. I’m just sharing how I have used it now just because I naturally tend to do that or I’ve personally learned before you created the system how to do it and now I’m going to implement and bring those two together because it’s not quite solid, but I have different colors because I work really well with different colors.
Russ Perry: And what you shared, Mika, like just for everyone listening is like the specific plan that you’ve gotten to, and that’s a lot of you may already be doing a piece of this. What I like about this system is it really helps you get clear on why, like why you’re doing the things you’re doing, what days, I didn’t dive into a ton of detail on this, but there are times of the days that you should be doing house stuff versus business stuff versus financial stuff versus kid stuff based on your energy levels.
You may have a podcast creation time scheduled. It may or may not be the actual optimal time for you to do that. So the time blocking planning process, the long, big thing to say, that is actually the way you can make sure that this system works the best for you in a proactive way. So thank you.
Mika Perry: Good job.
Russ Perry: Thanks.
Mika Perry: I love it and I’m excited to implement some of this into my life too. I love learning new frameworks, improving upon what I’m already doing. So I kind of feel like that’s what this is for me. I’m already used to time blocking, but that’s just taking it to the next level. And again, focusing on the intent behind all the things that I do.
Russ Perry: Great. And for the listeners out there that are wanting to get started on this, go to the website, go to our blog post on it, GoodToBeHomepodcast.com/timeblocking, and we will have a template, a little outline of the rules inside the template, and you can get started on making yours, and we’d love to see it. Take a picture, post it on Instagram stories, tag me and Mika, @RussPerry and @MikaPerry are our handle names, screen names?
Mika Perry: Handles?
Russ Perry: Handles? I dunno, whatever. And we’ll reshare that and we’d love to see what you create.
Mika Perry: Thanks again for listening and giving us our ratings and reviews. It really means a lot to us and we really appreciate you being part of this community. If you have any comments, suggestions, you want to reach out, talk with us, email us at hello@GoodToBeHomepodcast.com.
Russ Perry: Have a great week, everyone.
Mika Perry: Bye.
Russ Perry: Thanks for listening to this episode of Good To Be Home.
Mika Perry: And don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes and give us a rating.
Russ Perry: See you next time.