Timeboxing - How It Works to Make You More Productive

Darryl Bachmeier
May 29, 2019


Timeboxing is a simplistic time management procedure that involves allocating a fixed, maximum amount of time to activity in advance and then completing the activity within that period. Let us look at how timeboxing works, the value it provides, and how it integrates into other work processes.

Know what timeboxing is?

In essence, timeboxing is a time management technique where you set aside a specific amount of time for a planned activity. You work in the process for some time, stop doing it when the time is up - then, evaluate whether you have achieved the intended goals.

This concept was first introduced by James Martin, author of the book Rapid Application Development, as part of active software development.

You can use this approach to handle your project management tasks or manage your mistakes.

Why timeboxing is used?

The purpose of timeboxing can be summed up as two: improving productivity and time management. Most personal reasons why people use timeboxing fall into one of two categories:


Those who want to use timeboxing usually see the best in each day. Human nature often leads us down the path of minimal resistance, which can lead to laziness and procrastination. Timeboxing is one way to deal with those weaknesses.

One of the biggest reasons we cannot fully engage in productivity is distractions. Once we lose our focus, it is hard to get back on track. Timeboxing helps us retain focus while completing tasks, while at the same time allowing us time to experience efforts that are even more frivolous.

Term management

When productivity and time management go hand in hand, sometimes you want to manage your time, which allows you more time to engage in or participate in hobbies or extracurricular activities. Time management makes it possible to add everything to your daily schedule no matter what type of activity it falls under.

Many people are not satisfied with dedicating their life to their profession alone, but sometimes you may feel like you have no time for anything else.

How to use timeboxing?

When looking at a long list of things to do, you can quickly feel overwhelmed, which can lead to stress or procrastination. Timeboxing can help you plan your day to increase your productivity and tap items from the to-do list in the most efficient way.

Try these four steps to organize your day with Timebox:

  1. Setting goals

As Hall of Fame baseball player Yogi Perra once said, “If you do not know where you are going, you will end up somewhere else.” Identifying your timebox boxes should go in any precise direction. Here are a few ideas for goals you can set:

  • Set aside time for hobbies
  • Media Reduce social media time wastage
  • Day Increases productivity during the workday
  • Work balance work and family
  1. Determining tasks

Next, decide which tasks you want in the timebox. Start with as many projects as you are comfortable with. You can start small to use it before improving the concept. Timeboxing every item in your table will make the biggest start.

  • The tasks you want to add will reflect the goals you have set for yourself. How and why we can break back with previously specified goals.
  • Use timeboxing to spend time on hobbies and get your work done effectively, so you have more time in your day.
  • Use timeboxing to set a specific time for scrolling through social media, so you do not receive a notification every time.
  • If your goal is to be more efficient while on the clock, find some projects that you usually struggle with and put them in high-efficiency timepieces.
  • Always set aside time for each area to balance your work with your family life.
  1. Estimation of the time

One thing you want to consider before entirely starting timeboxing is estimating the time you need to do your routine tasks. Knowing how much time is allotted for any particular task will give you a better idea of ​​how much time you will devote to each of your time boxes.

You do not want to run out of time allotted for each activity, so you want to try this and make it as accurate as possible.

  1. To implement

An essential step of timeboxing is using it. Once you have finished everything you have prepared, it is time to process it. Use your calendar tool to find your day and start working on following your timetables. Then, stick to your plan as close as possible.

  1. Evaluation

Evaluate and re-evaluate. Quick reassessment is the final step and needs to be repeated with some frequency. Timeboxing is used to improve yourself with your time and energy.

Before you start time boxing, sit down and review your goals and ask yourself the following questions:

  • Did I achieve the set goals?
  • What are the results of my timeboxing efforts?
  • Am I happy with the results?
  • What can I do to improve my timeline?

What are the benefits of timeboxing?

Obviously, the sense of urgency we talked about above is a major benefit related to timeboxing. However, this approach brings other positives, including:

Focus Improvement

One of the significant benefits of timeboxing is the level of focus. You will not allow yourself to be distracted by anything else that can only focus your attention on the task you have set for that timeline.

Frequent opportunities to re-evaluate

How many times a day do you take a step back and evaluate your progress and outcomes? Once upon a time if you were lucky?

That is normal. Most of us do not take the time to evaluate our performance until the end of our workday.

Less excess plans

You finally had to deal with such a big project as completing all the slides and notes for the upcoming presentation.

Bottom Lines

Although breaking records over time may feel like a reaction at first rather than a task, timeboxing is relatively straightforward and easy to implement.

So, stop bullying yourself with a to-do list and think about how you can break your workday into time boxes instead. This will provide you with more controlling over your time, your energy, and - most importantly - your work.

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