Bandwidth Management

We often look at our days as a series of time blocks. We think time is the variable to optimize for when, in reality, it’s only one piece of the puzzle.

Planning is about managing your bandwidth. It’s about managing your time, money, and energy. How much or how little of those three things do you have to put towards your life? How do those things impact each other?

Money can be used to buy yourself time and/or energy. Low energy means it will take you more time to get things done. Certain activities will give you energy while others will drain it. Some will affect your mental energy while others will affect your physical energy.

You get the picture…

None of these variables exist in a vacuum. That’s why it’s silly to play Tetris with the time blocks in our calendars and wonder why we can’t do everything. It doesn’t work like that.

If you want to create a life that honours you and where you want to go, it’s useful to get honest with yourself about the resources available to you in this season. Pay attention to how those resources affect each other and how they might change over time.

Make a list of activities that drain your energy and ones that contribute to it. Experiment with putting activities at different times in the day to see if you feel more efficient one way or another. Look at ways you can trade time for money and vice versa.

Learn how to tune into yourself. It’s dangerous to plan your life according to someone else’s bandwidth, but that’s where most productivity advice leads us.

Pay attention. Get curious. And through it all, give yourself grace.