Before we look at your specific recommendations, let’s discuss a concept we have pioneered here at ScheduleU.
The idea is simple: the volume of tasks you can manage varies with the setup of your habits, practices, apps and devices.
But that’s not all. There’s a corollary: when your current task volume exceeds the capacity of your setup, you inevitably experience a number of unwanted symptoms.
The good news is that you can change your setup, but the bad news is that most people don’t know where their setup came from, or what task volume it’s intended to handle. Therefore, they struggle.
As someone who does manual time blocking, you have made some conscious changes to the way you manage your tasks. In fact, you had to move well past the conventional wisdom and the explicit advice of some gurus to avoid the technique altogether.
But are you using the right app to do your time blocking? How about the best habits and practices? And what about those auto-schedulers? Should you be migrating your task management to one of those apps? How do you get past the heavy burden of keeping your calendar up to date on a daily basis?
These aren’t easy questions to answer, but they are important. Whether you decide to make any changes or not, there would be an impact on the everyday job you give yourself of managing your tasks effectively in your calendar.
So where do you start?
First, I recommend you revisit the analysis you did of the distribution of your task locations.
If you believe that your tasks are not sufficiently concentrated in the right areas (Levels 1-4) then I suggest you check out the other learning resources available outside ScheduleU. They will help build a firm foundation.
After all, you can’t be an effective time blocker if your skills at the other fundamentals in your setup other than Scheduling are weak, viz: Capturing, Emptying, Tossing, Acting Now, Storing, Listing, Switching, Interrupting, Warning, Reviewing, Flowing and Habiting. These other learning resources are targeted on creating a plan of improvement in these other fundamentals.
However, if you are satisfied with the distribution of your tasks in different locations, I recommend that you become a serious student of both manual scheduling and auto-scheduling. There’s no better place to do that than to take my free training, A Course in Scheduling. (In a matter of months, this training will no longer be complimentary, however.)
This training is all about time blocking but it goes far beyond the introductory stuff that’s so popular in blogs, videos and podcasts. I have been studying, using and teaching the technique for almost two decades and this programme offers one shortcut after another to ease the pressure many experience. You’ll look at the habits, practices app and devices you must choose between to be effective. And yes, by the end, you will know whether or not you need to upgrade to an auto-scheduler.
This is the kind of comprehensive training that will last you several years because of the plans you’ll make to stay ahead of your task volume.
The choice is yours – I hope that you find an opportunity to improve your skills through the offerings here at ScheduleU.