Time Blocking

By: Julie East, Corp. Marketing & Recruiting

Sep 20, 2022

Time blocking is a method of time-management specifically engineered to help you control your schedule…before it can control you.  While the concept is not new, there has been a resurgence in the topic.  It even went viral on TikTok recently, attracting more than 3 million views.  In this busy and hectic culture, if you’re feeling pulled in several directions, learning to manage your time is imperative to overall success and wellbeing.



Time blocking is a way to purposefully break down your day into small chunks, devoting a dedicated amount of time to each task. The intent is to focus deeply and exclusively on the progress of a specific task within each time block, removing all other tasks to their own dedicated time block. For example, if you need to put together a cost-estimate for a new project that’s due next week, you might schedule 90 minutes to work on it today, during which time you silence your cell phone and minimize your email.



The first step in time blocking is to understand why you need time management in the first place.  According to Paul J. Meyer, award-winning author, and motivational speaker, “Productivity is never an accident.  It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.”  By arranging your day ahead of time, you can put the focus on more essential tasks, and actively work towards eliminating – or pushing off for a better time – those time-consuming distractions we all fight.



Time blocking is also beneficial for organizing personal time.  Since a proper work-life balance is also vital to overall success and growth, use this technique to schedule meaningful pursuits outside of the office.  Plan to take a coffee break with a colleague, arrange a dinner with family, or just schedule time for yourself to meditate on your priorities and goals.  This time spent sewing back into your own mental health will help you avoid burnout and make you more productive during your work blocks.



For time blocking to be successful, a weekly review is crucial.  Start by listing all the most important tasks you need to accomplish in the upcoming week and put them on the calendar by priority.  Determine how long each task will take, or how long you’d like to spend on it.  For obligations like answering emails or making phone calls, be sure to create some flexibility by adding a time cushion for responses and follow-up.  For deep work, which is work requiring intense focus such as writing, accounting or computer coding, if the idea of three hours devoted to one thing seems daunting, try breaking it down into smaller, more manageable chunks.  For example, if your task is blog writing, you might add it to your calendar like this:


Blog writing

9:00 AM to 11:00 AM – work on first draft

11:00 AM to 12:00 PM - review and edit

12:00 PM to 1:00 PM - lunch break

1:00 PM to 2:00 PM - final review of the blog


These time breaks force you to work efficiently because you only have a limited amount of time on each step of the process to complete the task. Be sure to add flexibility for reactive tasks, like answering emails, phone calls, instant messages, or last minute meeting invites. Time blocking remains valuable because you decide when to do specific tasks, instead of letting your day and reactive tasks determine when you focus on those responsibilities.

Time blocking is also effective because it helps you follow through on your goals. Scheduling your tasks and goals simply makes you more likely to follow through. So, in addition to blocking work time, you schedule personal goals in that time frame.

Let’s say one of your goals could be to lose weight and get healthier. During your lunch break between 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM, you can schedule a workout.


12:00 PM to 12:30 PM - eat lunch

12:30 PM to 1:00 PM - walk around the building, block, etc. 


Remember that gym membership you paid for? Force the schedule into your time block. On your way home, from 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM Mon, Wed, and Fri, is your gym time.  Because time management isn’t always easy, especially for those of us who feel pulled in many different directions, time-blocking forces you to confront your priorities and keep a solid focus.


Time blocking doesn’t have to be specific times either.  Like the example in the beginning of the blog, small chunks of time blocking can be used for other tasks. One of the hardest tasks in my household is cleaning. How many times have you sent the kids to clean their room and after HOURS they have accomplished little to nothing. This creates frustration, and a complete loathing of a basic function. Instead, create a time block for each small task in the room.


15 minutes – pick up clothes

15 minutes – pick up toys

15 minutes – pick up trash

15 minutes – make bed, vacuum and dust


In one hour, not only is the room cleaner, but your child is happier, less stressed and now has time to do other, (let’s face it) better things to do.

And because we all have smartphones, using the calendar app promotes accountability and helps to keep your time blocking on schedule. You can set up reminders and color code tasks on most calendar apps as well. For example, blue can represent work projects, orange can represent work meetings, and green represents personal tasks. Color coding your calendar events helps you get a high-level overview of your time blocks with just a glance.


About Lofton: Founded in 1979, Lofton Services offers clients the best of all worlds. We provide the responsive, personal service and flexibility of a small local firm while having the technology, resources, and infrastructure to deliver the benefits of the biggest players in our industry. Lofton Staffing can deliver the right people, with the right skills, right when you need them. Contact us today

←Back to Blog

We Believe...

Relationships are built…one on one.
Know your people - match interest and talents to the tasks.
Don’t manage by numbers. (They just show if we’re on track.) People do the work.
People should feel better when they leave than when they came – and in turn we feel better.
When we help others, we help ourselves.
Great expectations: fair pay, fair treatment, teach me.
Have fun…and be better.
Work at having fun (51% of the time.) If you don’t feel it, fake it. Having fun is not slacking off. Work is more natural than play.