The Block Schedule System or the Block Schedule Method is a kind of time management that allows for effective and efficient use of time throughout the day.
I discovered this method in a Youtube video by Brittany Vasseur, who discovered it through another YouTuber named Jordan Page.
Proper management of time has always been an issue for me, and even though I have a diary, I still struggled to organise all the things that I want to do in my day.
One thing that I am a big sucker for doing, is spending too long on one task, working through lunch and then not having time to do any of the other things that need to be done.
This is one of the reasons why the block schedule method works so well for me.
How does it work?
The Block Schedule Method works by dividing your day into blocks or slots, and for each block or slot, a certain amount of time is allocated.
Within those slots, a generalised theme is chosen, which can then give room to take these themes even further by dedicating tasks underneath them.
Below is a snippet from my own Block Schedule for my 2-3:30pm time slot and then for my 3:30-4:30 time slot.
Say for example you have children that you need to get up for school, you may wake up at 6am, and you know that after you’ve taken the children to school, you’re usually home by 8:30, so your first time block might be from 6-8:30am which you might title your “get children up and ready” slot.
Then from 8:30-10am, you might take some time for yourself, maybe go to the gym, do a morning meditation or have a shower, so you might entitle this time block as “workout and getting ready”
You may then want to do some work from 10-1pm, so this would be entitled “work,” this is when I then take it a step further and use my diary to jot down all the things I need to do for work, but by 1pm, I stop working and break for lunch.
Taking things further:
In my Block Schedule, I have written H2O in each time slot as well - another tip from Brittany Vasseur. This reminds me to try and drink a glass a water in slot as well.
You may want to schedule a five minute breathing exercise for each slot.
You might want to schedule a few minutes of self care in each time slot.
The options are literally endless and there is not really a right or wrong way to do it, so this will be different for everyone.
Something that was mentioned in both YouTube videos, was to either 'unplug or plug in' meaning that you would either have your phone with you or not.
You can set alarms for when each block ends...
You can get very creative :)
But I work full time away from home...
For people who work full time, and not from home, the block schedule method can still work for you, however you will need to tweak it quite a bit.
You could perhaps do something like this:
6-8am Get up and get ready
8-8:0am Drive to work
You may want to include listening to an audio book while driving to work
11-11:10 Tea break
You may want to schedule a 10 minute meditation in this slot.
3:30-3:40 Tea break, mindfulness exercise
5-5:30 drive home
5:30-9 make dinner, watch TV
9-11 bed routine
You may want to do yoga or a meditation.
As mentioned earlier, the Block Schedule System will be different for everyone, and it is still possible to do it when working away from home.
And super busy people can do this as well!
The whole point of this system is to make life easier for busier people!
And if you’re the sort of person who is totally disorganised and has everything all over the place - I urge you to try this, because this could change your life!
Unexpected Life Issues
It is very important to realize that this system cannot always be followed to exact time slots.
Sometimes things happen in life, and they have to be done at a specific time.
For example, I don't necessarily schedule outings for myself, because it's not something that I do everyday.
I don't have children, and I work from home, so I don't go out everyday, but when I do go out, it would normally be in the afternoon during the 2-3:30 slot.
If my husband is at home, sometimes we go for lunch, but we go during that time to avoid the crazy lunch rush.
What about weekends?
The Block Schedule System is followed very loosely on the weekend, partly because for me, weekends are family time, going out to restaurants and shopping, going for picnics (in the summer) ,and just chilling out and watching a good movie or two.
I do my morning routine and evening routine, because these are just something I have to do to start and end my day off, and I love routine, it really helps me feel less anxious.
However, I don't work on the weekend and I don't do housework, so this system is only followed to a point on the weekends.
Four reasons why the block schedule method works so well:
1. It helps to motivate you by giving you a routine to follow
As someone who struggles with Anxiety, the Block Schedule System gives you that comfort of having a routine or a checklist to complete. This prevents a bored mind from conjuring up anxious thoughts as you are active and bust throughout the day.
2. It helps to get each task done, or at least help you to start a project to avoid procrastination
I'm a big procrastinator, so even by starting something, even if it's something small, in my mind, I've started it, and now I have to complete it
3. It enables you to move along swiftly from one task to the next, making sure optimal productivity is reached
This is one of the things that the Block Schedule System has helped me with a lot, because I am a great example of someone who will sit at my computer and work on something, and get carried away, and then work on it the whole day, often skipping lunch, and not being able to complete anything else.
4. It keeps you occupied
People who struggle with stress and anxiety need some kind of a routine, to keep the mind busy and occupied, that way, there is less chance of you sitting and thinking about the anxiety.
I urge every person who struggles with time management to give this system a try, and especially if you have anxiety - because it will only help you in the end!
Please feel free to check out the accompanying video: