Comments on: 15 Time Boxing Strategies to Get Things Done Exploring ways to use our minds efficiently. Mon, 16 Dec 2013 07:19:11 +0000 hourly 1 By: 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity | ApnaZilla Mon, 18 Jul 2011 18:18:00 +0000 […] 15 Time Boxing Strategies to Get Things Done […]

By: No Buts Allowed: How to Eliminate Clutter and Increase Productivity – GNO515 Adventure Week 3 – GNO515 Studios Thu, 23 Jun 2011 23:10:04 +0000 […] managing your time. Time is like space, only it manifests sequentially rather than simultaneously. Time-boxing is a system that encourages scheduling your tasks in specific segments of time to maximize […]

By: 130 sposobów jak poprawić swoją wydajność Wed, 15 Jun 2011 17:53:07 +0000 […] Pracuj seriami (zgodnie z metodą time boxing). […]

By: Luciano Passuello Sun, 12 Jun 2011 12:29:58 +0000 Hey Mikael,

That does not sound weird at all! (at least not for me!) 🙂

It’s amazing how I oftentimes suffer from the same problem. See, time boxes avoid you from trying to being perfect in the task at hand… but suddenly you’re trying to create a perfect time box — what a trap! The end result is, of course, procrastination to start working on the time box.

What has worked for me regarding this problem is the following:

1. “Let me just press the start button…”, just as you mention. When the clock is ticking, I know it’s “work time”, so I just start doing the task. It’s amazing how physically starting the clock has such an effect. But the final trick for this to work for me is…

2. Time Budget. If I have non-negotiable limits in place that make time scarce, I will tend to honor them. An example: “I have only 1 time box to work on this particular task today… and this is it (the clock is ticking already)”

Thanks for sharing your experience, Mikael — that was very helpful!

By: Mikael Thu, 09 Jun 2011 18:17:04 +0000 This article is gold – I have used timeboxes professionally before (management consultant here) but this puts the practice into a wider perspective.

I just have one thing to add to number 4 – “Conquer Perfectionism” as a notorious perfectionist. This already contains solid advice but from my experience there is a devious footnote to this principle – when can you actually start your timebox? See, before I usually started timeboxing things when the number of active items to juggle got beyond a certain threshold and I had to “selectively single-task” to get good progress on all items. As a support for this type of work mode there is simply nothing to compare with if you want to achieve solid results. However… this “mode” if you call it that was usually triggered when I knew that one of the things I had in the air was burning. That was when my focus was triggered and I started to “leap” in small, focused increments.

The ninja-stuff of timeboxing from my experience starts to happen when you deeply accept internally that you may actually have a ‘not perfect’ timebox (hah!). Signs of this state is when you start the clock when you are dead tired, generally uninspired or just bored with a focus that is all over the place. Before, I dreaded pushing the “start”-button on the clock unless I had built a sufficient momentum mentally to accept that “I will now turn my focus to this one thing” with a slight undertone of “…and it will be great”.

With some training it is very possible to start whatever clock you are using, stare at the counter for a few seconds and feel your focus slowly narrowing to whatever is at hand. It is more a physical act than a mental, and if I were to graph my “level of focus” it would fluctuate wildly over one 25 minute period and it may start at 10. 20 or even 0% the first minute (where before I couldnt start unless it was 100%) – however, it remains on one item only. By using timeboxes in this way the amount of progress achieved on one regular, average, normal/”boring” day on each item is just through the roof compared to before.

This might read a bit weird to anyone not struck by the perfectionist bug but this was a master key for me. Ironically it became blindingly obvious one day when I was sick and by the nature of things had to write a proposal with a clear deadline. I just couldnt reach that state where I wanted to push the start button until I had renegotiated with myself what it was I was intending to accomplish during those dedicated minutes. They would not be great, but I would get at least a little bit further.

Anyway, thanks for an inspiring and eye-opening blog!

By: Shelley Riseden Mon, 18 Apr 2011 00:32:54 +0000 I have always managed my time this way, although you appear to be much better at it. I love the name you have given it. My first time box of everyday is mosquito tasks, it gives me a sense of accomplishment that keeps me on track until lunch!

By: David Thu, 24 Feb 2011 17:04:03 +0000 Please take a look at this, although its primary intent isnt to be a time management tool, this should prove to be an AMAZING help for time boxing/timed bursts/Pomodoro technique.

It’s an small, pocketable & “clippable” interval timer primarily intended for interval fitness training (HIIT, Tabatas etc).

2 versions exist, the MAX one should be the best for time boxing thanks to its ability to set up to 25 different intervals and save up to 15 programs.

Here is a copy and paste from their website


* 1 or 2 intervals – 2 seconds to 99 minutes
* Repeat up to 99 times
* Beep and/or Vibrate alarm
* Alarm duration 1, 5, or 10 seconds
* Stopwatch function
* Secure Belt clip
* Compact Size (1 ¾ x 2 ¼ x ½ inches)
* Water and shock resistant
* AAA battery required


* Up to 25 different intervals
* Repeat groups up to 99 times
* Save up to 15 programs
* LCD Backlit screen
* Alarm by beep, vibration or both
* Alarm duration of 1, 2, 5, 9 seconds
* Belt clip
* Water and shock resistant
* 1 year warranty

Please note that I am NOT in any way affiliated to this company

By: Yotonka Thu, 13 Jan 2011 13:39:17 +0000 For timeboxing I bought a TimeTimer wrist Watch. It Works Perfect. So easy to visualize and get a clou of how much Time is Left to do the job. Give it a Shot!TimeTimer

By: Soub Wed, 03 Nov 2010 01:14:23 +0000 But what if you haven’t finished what you needed to do?

By: Luciano Passuello Sat, 15 May 2010 22:18:56 +0000 Hi Maddie,

Indeed, print functionality is currently broken. While I’m troubleshooting it, you may use PrintFriendly service, it’s pretty cool. Go here.