- Authors: Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky | Hardcover : 304 pages | ISBN-13 : 978-0525572428
Nobody ever looked at an empty calendar and said, “The best way to spend this time is by cramming it full of meetings!” or got to work in the morning and thought, Today I’ll spend hours on Facebook! Yet that’s exactly what we do. Why?
In a world where information refreshes endlessly and the workday feels like a race to react to other people’s priorities faster, frazzled and distracted has become our default position. But what if the exhaustion of constant busyness wasn’t mandatory? What if you could step off the hamster wheel and start taking control of your time and attention? That’s what this book is about.
As creators of Google Ventures’ renowned “design sprint,” Jake and John have helped hundreds of teams solve important problems by changing how they work. Building on the success of these sprints and their experience designing ubiquitous tech products from Gmail to YouTube, they spent years experimenting with their own habits and routines, looking for ways to help people optimize their energy, focus, and time. Now they’ve packaged the most effective tactics into a four-step daily framework that anyone can use to systematically design their days. Make Time is not a one-size-fits-all formula. Instead, it offers a customizable menu of bite-size tips and strategies that can be tailored to individual habits and lifestyles.
Make Time isn’t about productivity, or checking off more to-dos. Nor does it propose unrealistic solutions like throwing out your smartphone or swearing off social media. Making time isn’t about radically overhauling your lifestyle; it’s about making small shifts in your environment to liberate yourself from constant busyness and distraction.
This book is a great motivation and inspiration to start off the year. I have made resolutions, both financial and growth-like, and this book just gave me a password to how to work on them efficiently. That being said here is my main take-away from the book.
The book is about creating more time in your day for the things you care about.
Two forces compete for our time. The first one is the busy bandwagon which can be explained by our today’s culture of constant busyness- the overflowing inboxes, stuffed calendars and endless to-do lists. The second force is referred to as infinity pools. These are apps and other sources of endlessly replenishing content. So how do we escape? In today’s always-asking-for-more world, there’s an endless series of tasks we could be doing, so whenever you finish one task, it gets replaced by another. You empty your inbox; another email appears. You field one request; a colleague makes another. More productivity thus leads to more busyness. And if you don’t want to get stuck in an Infinity Pool of distraction, like Instagram or Twitter, couldn’t you just refrain from entering the pool in the first place? Use your willpower and just say no? Unfortunately, the idea of “just saying no” is wishful thinking. Infinity Pools have been expertly designed to overpower your resistance and suck you into their endless content. The companies that make them have a vested interest in doing so. The more you use their apps, the more money they make.
If willpower alone isn’t enough to defeat Infinity Pools, and if productivity just makes us busier, how do we escape them? Well, the answer lies in identifying the ultimate source of their superpower and taking it away from them. That source can be summarized in one word: reactivity. Both the Busy Bandwagon and Infinity Pools derive their power from our being unmindfully reactive to external stimuli. A colleague emails you with a question, and you feel obligated to respond to it immediately. Your phone buzzes with a notification, and you feel compelled to look at the screen.
If the problem with our default settings is unmindful reactivity, then its antidote is the opposite: mindful proactivity.To change our default settings, we need tactics and a strategy to create barriers between us and our time wasters. The authors suggest four steps to create time:
- Highlight: decide what you want to make time for. Something happens when you start the day with one high priority goal.
- Laser: Beat distractions to make time for your highlight. You get more done when you burn devices.
- Energize: Use the body to recharge the brain. Have the energy for focused work and clear thinking by exercising, eating real food, having a good sleep and finding quiet moments
- Reflect: To do this, simply take a few moments every day to note what your highlight was, whether you made time for it, which tactics you used, what worked and didn’t work about them, what changes you could make and which tactics you’ll use tomorrow. This is the last step of the Make Time strategy
The details about tactics to use are worth your time. Get the book yo! This is a must-read for anyone who has ever thought, If only there were more hours in the day…, Make Time will help you stop passively reacting to the demands of the modern world and start intentionally making time for the things that matter.