“I have all the time in the world.”
That’s how author and time management expert Laura Vanderkam starts our conversation. But looking at her life, you’d probably think the exact opposite. She’s written several books, hosts a podcast, regularly writes articles for several publications (including Fast Company), and she’s the mom of four. By most definitions, she’s pretty busy. But she doesn’t think so.
As Vanderkam sees it, we all have more time than we think. And she should know: She’s made a living researching and analyzing how the busiest people spend every hour of their days (she has also been tracking her own time for several years). What she’s found is that much of how busy we feel comes from how we think about our time, and what we choose to focus on and remember. That’s what allows someone like her with a packed schedule to say she has “all the time in the world.”
But where to start if you do feel too busy? Vanderkam offers several tactics, from jotting down memorable moments each day to spending five minutes at the end of each list writing down goals, to tracking how you spend every half hour of your week on a spreadsheet. Listen to this week’s episode of Secrets of the Most Productive People to hear all of her advice, along with Henry David Thoreau’s view on telling people how busy you are.