How I use time management to enforce my actions

Word count: 390 words

Reading time: About 1.5 minutes

You may remember me having written about using the pomodoro. This fantastic time management technique, which requires you to focus your attention on a task for 25 minutes, calls for having a noisy timer ticking in the background. When I started doing pomodoros, I disdained the noise. Instead, I appropriated a quiet digital timer from my kitchen.

Fast forward 12 months and, for reasons I no longer remember, I’d switched to a super noisy timer that I now adore. (My husband always claims it sounds as though a bomb is about to explode in my office!) What do I like about the noise? For one thing, it reminds me that I’m supposed to be writing (or doing whatever other work I’ve decided on); for another it makes me feel a pleasant sense of urgency — not too much, but just the right amount to keep me motivated.

But there’s one more thing I enjoy about my noisy timer. It’s actually a piece of software that allows me to record my accomplishments. The software, called Action Enforcer, allows me to list my daily tasks, set a time limit for each and then click on a box when I want to start working on a particular job. That’s when the time management clock starts clicking merrily away until I run out of the set time. At that point, the timer emits a pleasant “bing” and my job should be done. I then have the opportunity to click on a tick mark and the job disappears! (In fact,however, the “task” doesn’t really disappear. Instead, it zooms over to a recording sheet so that, at the end of the day, I can see all I’ve accomplished.) The software is addictive, in a good way, and it costs only $27.

I find Action Enforcer utterly reinforcing and would operate as a reseller in a hearbeat, if I had time to set up that kind of thing. So, if you’re interested, click on the link above, and check it out. (Warning: the sales page is long and tiresome. Just scroll to the end if you’re interested in purchasing.) Also, be sure to allow yourself about an hour for learning how to set it up. There are some YouTube videos that can help.

And, guess what? I just finished this post 14 minutes early because Action Enforcer has been tracking my time the whole while. Talk about effective time management. Woo hoo!

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