While this blog is written to explore Time Management 2.0, I am starting to think that there is an argument for Time Management 1.0.
What’s the difference?
In Time Management 1.0, users were told to follow a prescription laid out by a guru. The details were quite specific — follow this, do that, organize yourself this way, use these strange terms, follow the system, everything will work out.
In Time Management 2.0 the onus is on the user to create time management systems of their own that fit their personalities, habit patterns and needs. Users come to realize that there is no way that someone can devise a system that works for everyone. Instead of looking for the perfect system to adopt, they go looking for principles that they can use in their own time management systems, with a twist here and there to improve the odds of it working.
But what about the rank novice, or white belt? They made it through grade school, which indicates that they have some kind of idea of how to manage their time. However, they stumble along in life, forgetting appointments, being late, and experiencing the stress that comes from feeling overburdened.
At this point, they are not aware that they are using a time management system, albeit one that was not intentionally developed. The habits they are employing on a daily basis were not chosen, or practiced. Some are good, and some are bad, but the novice remains blissfully unaware.
From what I can tell, they continue until they hear a clear message that causes them to reflect on their situation that goes something like this: “Follow this new time management system and you will become much more effective, and have greater peace of mind.”
They do a quick comparison between their current situation, and the one described by the new time management system, and decide to learn all they can about the new one. They take a class, or read a book, but at the end of their period of learning, they are aware of some new things they are not doing, but are convinced they should.
They all face a similar challenge however, that few overcome — they now have a whole bunch of new habits that they need to implement, but they don’t know how.
A few are able to make some changes, but from what I can tell, most fail to implement what they have learned in a anything more than a cosmetic way.
Which brings me to the first question I posed at the top of this article — is it better for the novice to try to adopt someone else’s system, than it is for them to contemplate creating one of their own? Is Time Management 2.0 an approach that is only for those who have “graduated” from 1.0?
I don’t know the answer — let me know your opinion on this one.