Calendar Integrity: Own Your Time

I don’t think I’m telling you anything new when I say that your calendar is one of the most important tools you have. Period. Doesn’t matter if it’s Google, Exchange, AOL (yeah, that’s still a thing), or a physical planner. In this day and age, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have their time at least a little planned out somewhere.

What really challenges us all is Calendar Integrity. The ability to stick to the schedule you’ve created – and have others respect that schedule. So here are a few thoughts about working with time in the 20’s. (Weird. So weird.)

  • Block time for your tasks – personal and professional.
    At a minimum make sure your personal calendar maps to your work calendar and holds time for personal and family needs, including non-meeting work.
  • Block yourself a break.
    Most calendars with basic features now let you set a default meeting length. It’s well-known that meetings expand to fill the time, so give them less. Try a default meeting time of 25 or 50 minutes.
  • Have a public calendar to share with people.
    Tools like Calendary, or my fav Reclaim (see below), will let you have a public calendar that shows people your available time and lets them schedule you. Even if you work in a company that has common calendars, it’s helpful to have an open calendar you can share with vendors, external colleagues, or friends planning a lunch. You can also view your free/busy time easily if you happen to be somewhere without access to your calendar.

And the most important calendar to-do: stick to it. It can be hard to shut down a bullish meeting, but hopefully, a nuanced calendar can help you protect your time – and sanity.

Tips & Tools

Reclaim lets you add “habits” that can “float” to available times in your schedule. It also includes Stats, Task scheduling, and “Smart 1:1s” that can float to work for both users. 

This is a tool that I pay for because it’s THAT useful. I love their Scheduling Links that make it easy for me to open different types of time slots for different types of work.

Stat of the Week

365.2425

Number of days in a year.

As far back as 1 BCE most societies had come to use a calendar that included 365.24 days, broken into 12 months. [1]

What they didn’t agree on was when new years or months began, or the timing of the required “leap year.” It wasn’t until after the Gregorian Calendar was instituted in 1582 [2] that everyone got on the same schedule.

My Recent Highlights from the Wire

[1] – https://www.statista.com/statistics/1034385/current-year-various-calendars/
[2] – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gregorian_calendar

Featured image generated by Midjourney AI.