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Make Time

How to Focus on What Matters Every Day

By Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky
22-minute read
Audio available
Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky

Make Time (2018) promises the seemingly impossible, then actually delivers the goods. These blinks will help you do exactly what the title suggests: make more time. Of course, there are only so many hours in the day, and you can’t generate more of them. What they do provide, though, is an insightful diagnosis of how and why you lose your time to busyness and distractions along with a highly personalizable strategy and a generous buffet of practical tactics for reclaiming it, allowing you to do the things you really want to do in life.

  • Professionals who feel frazzled by the busyness of modern life
  • Social media and smartphone users who feel like their devices and apps own them, rather than the other way around
  • Quarter, mid and late-life crisis sufferers who sense their lives are slipping by in a busy, distracted blur

Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky are both former tech industry insiders who used the strategy and tactics outlined in these blinks to regain their time from their hectic lives and pursue their true passions, which ultimately led to major shifts in their careers.

John dedicated ten years to Google, where he helped build Gmail and Google Hangouts. Jake spent about 15 years as a designer for tech companies such as YouTube. They met at Google Ventures, where they developed a design process that they shared in their New York Times bestselling book Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days. Now, they’re both professional writers, and John devotes part of his year to his passion for long-distance sailing.

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Make Time

How to Focus on What Matters Every Day

By Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky
  • Read in 22 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 14 key ideas
Upgrade to Premium Read or listen now
Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky
Synopsis

Make Time (2018) promises the seemingly impossible, then actually delivers the goods. These blinks will help you do exactly what the title suggests: make more time. Of course, there are only so many hours in the day, and you can’t generate more of them. What they do provide, though, is an insightful diagnosis of how and why you lose your time to busyness and distractions along with a highly personalizable strategy and a generous buffet of practical tactics for reclaiming it, allowing you to do the things you really want to do in life.

Key idea 1 of 14

We lose our time to busyness and distractions.

Why do we feel like there’s never enough time to do the things we really want to do? The simple answer would seem to be that there’s just too much to do on any given day – too many emails to answer, too many meetings to attend, too many Facebook posts to keep up with. But that’s only partially true. The full truth is that our lack of time is, to some extent, self-imposed.

There are two phenomena at work here. The first is the Busy Bandwagon. This is the modern mindset that tells us that we must squeeze as much work as possible into every moment of the day. It urges us to be constantly productive, resulting in overloaded inboxes, jam-packed calendars and never-ending to-do lists.

The second phenomenon is the rise of Infinity Pools. Unless you’ve been hiding in an underground bunker for the past decade, you’re most likely already familiar with these. Think Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Netflix and news websites. Instantly available with a mere tap of the screen or click of the mouse, they’re essentially apps and other digital sources of limitless, inexhaustible, constantly-replenishing content – whether it be information, entertainment or a bit of both.

As anyone who has encountered them knows first-hand, these Infinity Pools can be quite the time wasters – and statistics back this up. On average, we spend four hours watching television and another four hours staring at our smartphones per day – the equivalent of a full-time job! Now, combine that second job with our actual full-time jobs, which are hectic enough by themselves and often spill into our non-work hours because of the Busy Bandwagon. Well, it’s clear where all the time goes, right?

What’s worse is that the Busy Bandwagon and Infinity Pools have joined forces to become a tag-teaming duo of time destroyers. Exhausted by the Busy Bandwagon, we’re easily enticed into plunging into the Infinity Pools and passively soaking up their content. The result is endless tasks and endless distractions, with us bouncing back and forth between the two all day long – day in, day out.

So, the question is: How do we escape? Well, that’s what the rest of these blinks are all about! First, we’ll look at what not to do. Then, we’ll look at what to do.

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