How Batching and Time Blocking Is The Key To Productivity

Researchers have shown it can take as much as 25 minutes to get back to the same mental state you were before being interrupting.

This is one reason why task switching is so detrimental to productivity and sanity. When your brain switches between tasks or focus, there is a cost of time and mental energy to get back to the same state as before.

When you consider the fact that your best work comes from a deep, focused flow state, it’s no wonder that most people never achieve truly great work.

The key to getting into flow is a rigid deep work routine where you focus on one thing at a time and there are ZERO distractions.

The second thing you can do is batching. That’s what I’m highlighting today.

Instead of editing, publishing and promoting one podcast at a time, I like to do 5. This saves a mountain of time around getting into the “getting things done” state as well as conserves mental energy from having to think about the process involved. No matter how many times you’ve done something, there is still a mental priming your brain goes through to enter this state.

By doing multiple things together, my mind get into flow state faster for each additional item I complete because the “how to” energy is taken care of on the first or second go- round.

There is a breaking in period to getting into flow which can take as long as 30 minutes—or more if you are in a distracted or tired state. This is the problem with not batching things and trying to juggle or constantly switch between tasks. The mental energy you spend, and the time, just getting into even a shallow flow routine is a huge waste.

Your action item for today is simple:

  1. Separate your tasks into Deep Work and Shallow work.
  2. Then schedule the time each day for each work bucket.
  3. Then do one thing at a time during that time and let your mind get into execution
  4. mode, ideally batching multiple to dos together before moving on to something else.

I’ve written extensively about Deep Work, so read Cal’s book if you are still fuzzy on the concept. For shallow work, batching and scheduling time that’s blocked out to get as many things done that are similar or the same will save you a mountain of time and energy and will simplify many aspects of your work life.

The Daily 6

Daily tip or recommendation:

Batch your cooking. Cook a week’s meals at a time or a few days. Use an instant pot, slow cooker and your oven to cook ahead.

Daily book recommendation:

Build a reading routine. I’ll like to do fiction at night before bed and non-fiction right when I wake up to get my creative juices flowing.

Daily health tip:

10 pushups a day. I now do 20.

It’s amazing how your body responds to consistency. If you are consistent, your body will adapt.

Daily Cooking Tip

Pat your proteins super dry before searing. Liquid is the enemy of a good crust. You’ll end up steaming the sides of your proteins which gives you that ugly brown or grayish color. Always pat your proteins super dry.

Daily thoughts about money:

Think long term.Stop trying to time the market.

I see on YouTube and often hear from friends about buying this stock or that because of what’s probably going to happen. This is a fools’ errand.

Instead think about owning a company for years on end. Buy it today then have no plans to sell it. Like ever.

That’s how you win in investing, business and life: think long term.