What is time blocking and how to use a time blocking template?
Time blocking your schedule is a must have time management strategy for moms!
When you time block, you are looking at your schedule in a way that gives you flexibility AND structure
Time blocking is the concept of looking at your day in extended period of time instead of hour by hour.
Hourly schedules used to work great for me. When I was teaching and in the classroom, I had a million things to remember. I had to be at many meetings throughout my day, show up at certain times and follow a ton of deadlines.
When I left teaching 5 years ago to become an entrepreneur and work at home mom, I thought that using an hourly schedule like I did in the classroom would keep me focused and on point.
Instead, it led me to burn out FAST.
I had left teaching so that I could have more freedom, be more in control of my time and allow my job to align with my top priority – my family.
I found that by using an hourly planner I was stressing myself (and my family) out, felt more overwhelmed and behind and didn’t have a system that I could use to run my home that left space for us to just be human.
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How does time blocking help save time?
Time blocking is a mom’s best friend when it comes to time management.
We have so many things on our plates as busy moms and it sometimes feels impossible to get anything done.
How many times have you let overwhelm just paralyze you?
I’ve been there too.
I jam pack my schedule on Monday with a ton of to-dos, pretend that I’m superwoman and can get it all done, and feel overwhelmed and defeated by Wednesday.
When you use time blocking, you give yourself the freedom to live life while still being productive.
Yes, you’ll probably put too much on your plate and there are times when you’re still overwhelmed but if you incorporate time blocking into your day you’ll feel more in control and actually productive – instead of just spinning your wheels day in and day out.
Time blocking helps busy moms manage their time because it gives you and your family structure AND freedom.
Examples of time blocks as a mom
When you time block, you split your days into chunks around events that are happening.
For example, you might have a morning chunk from when your kids wake up until they go to school, or an afternoon chunk from lunchtime until nap.
Time blocking can help so much because you can customize them to what you need and change it each week or even each day.
I make a typical time block for our Monday through Friday that pretty much stays the same. I change it on the weekends when we have more activities or I have to go to work.
This week for example, I have had to switch the entire time block around because of summer camp and sports practices.
Even when you have to move your time blocks around, you can easily shift things from block to block.
Here is an example of our current summer time blocks. It’s important to note that I have a 2 year old who naps 1x a day, a 3.5 year old who goes to summer camp from 9am-12pm and she is currently dropping her nap (I know… I’m sad about it too) and a 12 year old who goes to camp 9am-3pm that is 30-40 minutes away.
I’ve listed below how I space my blocks out and you can read this post if you want to see what I put in each block and how I structure are day!
Time Block #1 Early Morning
5:00 am – 9:00 am
Time Block #2 Morning
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Time Block #3 Afternoon
12:00 pm – 3:30 pm
Time Block #4 Evening
3:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Time Block #5 Mommy Time
7:30 pm – 10:30 pm
As you can see I don’t recommend making any of your time blocks longer than 4-5 hours.
I’ve also anchored our times around an event – school drop off, naps, or bed. This allows for natural changes in our schedule as needed. If for example, the kids naps get switched or someone has to get picked up early, I can just move things around.
When you fill your time blocks, instead of exact times (unless you have an appointment or something you have to do at a certain time) you fill them with general things. It allows you to manage your time but not be tied down.
For example, if my morning time block is always errands and outside play time for the kids, I can figure out what time we need to leave or where we have to go.
If my kids know that during our evening block, I”m going to workout in the playroom and they get a show, it’s predictable for them. The know what is going to happen during that block and I can customize each day with what workout I plan to do.
Why you should have a template for time blocking.
I suggest having a template when you’re time blocking so that when you do your weekly schedule you don’t have to always start over.
Templates allow you to have predictability and help you think of your day and task in chunks instead of saying ‘what do i have to get done each day’
I use my time blocking template each week to pre plan out errands, activities and tasks.
I suggest trying to keep things as predictable as possible for yourself. Try to batch all of your errands on one day or one time of the day (maybe after you’ve just done school drop off so that you’re only in the car at that one time in the morning)
By using a template to preplan things, it also gives you some urgency to stay on your time blocks and allows you to see the week at a glance.
A time blocking template also helps because it will allow you to know the best time to make plans. If you know that your afternoon time block tends to be more time bringing kids to activities than if someone asks you to meet at the park for a playdate, you can suggest meeting during a better time block.
Sample time blocking template and free download
I use a very simple time blocking template each month. I have a general one that I fill out and adjust it monthly as needed.
Again, you can adjust your time blocks daily if you need to, but know the more predictable you can keep it the better! Time blocking is more about predictability and routine that being time bound and super structured!
This template is great to keep on the side of your fridge so that your kids and family can see what the week looks like or to put in your planner so that you have it at a glance.
If you want to start time blocking for your family , you need to grab this free template.
It’ll help you identify your general blocks (or even print one out for each day! Whatever works best for you!) so that you can start being more intentional about how to spend your day and get done what you need!
Make sure you PIN this to come back to later! I’d love to know how you’re using this template! Post it in the comments!
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