How a chess clock pushed my productivity a lot

We have big goals with To reach them of course it is important to just work a hard. However – we are all humans – the time we call “work” often includes things like to look for a snack, bring a coffee, check the news, chat a bit with a college, checking the price for a cool new gadget or say our friends hello in our preferred social network.

Of course that is all fine, as long as it not gets out of balance.

Reality is shocking

Some years ago I started to track myself with a timer. I measured just the pure work time, without all the activities noted above. I was shocked by the results!
Often I felt like I worked the whole day but my timer showed me something else. Often less than eight hours!


It started to get a competition: Me against the damn clock!

Day by day with ups and downs I improved and I could hit the eight-hour barrier more regular. The next step was to break the sonic wall –  ten hours. Again shockingly, this took me some weeks for my first success!

The chess clock

The best tool I found to track my times was a chess clock. With this I can track two times.

  1. real work time
  2. all the other time I am actually sitting on my desk but doing something else

Additionally it is something physically in front of me. In this way it is easier and faster and gives me something like a tiny ritual to start my work.

Self control

I am still using my clock every day, write down the numbers and sum them up at the end of the week.

This is my way to take care my productivity stays high and under control. Especially on the long run it pushed my work output a lot!

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