Time for a Change of Gears

As you may have noticed, over the past three months I have taken the chance to step away from regular posts to the 2Time Labs website.  While some of that time was spent writing my book (a business fable based on on Time Management 2.0 principles) I also spent some time looking at a new direction I want to pursue in 2012.

2011 was a big year in which I was finally able to clarify and name 2Time Labs as a venue for the best research in Time Management 2.0.  It’s taken 10+ years of thinking and 6+ years of writing to get to the point where I can say that the fundamental principles are robust, and just feel “right.”

While they are no means widespread, the ideas that:
– we each need a unique time management system to be our most productive
– what we are using today is fine… unless it’s not, in which case an upgrade is required
– an upgrade must take into account the system we already have developed and are using
– we should look at best practices from wherever we can find them to discover the most important gaps in our time management skills
– most of us cannot close the gaps in an instant — we need a plan to change habits gradually over time
– habit change is hard, and a supportive environment can be designed to help make the changes stick over the long haul

Here at 2Time Labs I have been living and breathing these concepts in blog posts, audios and videos, and also in MyTimeDesign and NewHabits programs.  They have started to show up in pockets here and there around the Internet and in books, but as a coherent philosophy it remains a well-kept “secret.”

In 2012 I hope to start a brand new phase in which I take Time Management 2.0 out of the lab, and place it in the hands of developers who can use it as an engine for solving tough performance problems such as Inbox Overload, time-stress, Information Overwhelm and chronic disorganization.

Unfortunately, at the moment, I am the only developer using these principles that I am aware of, and I’d like to give you some insight into what you might expect this year.

The first part of the plan is to retain the 2Time Labs website as the best source of time management research in the world. This should be good news for those who love this kind of stuff as the content will clearly be developed with the goal of advancing the thinking in this field.  There are likely to be fewer posts than the 3 per week I am usually able to maintain, and I’m going to try even harder to find others who are doing research in time management to be contributors.

What it also means is that 2Time Labs is likely to become too geeky for some readers who aren’t into all the fine details, data and definitions that  the site needs to get into in order to find and create the best thinking.

They might find it to be a bit boring.

However, the second part of the plan will come as good news to this group, which I hope will become the majority of our visitors.  I’m going to take the rarely used MyTimeDesign.com site and convert it to a place to find immediate assistance in a range of time management-related issues.  You know what they are… the ones that start with “I don’t have time to…”
– work through all my email
– take time off to improve my productivity
– deal with information overload
– balance my life
– get rid of all the clutter
– exercise and lose weight
– have a quality relationship with others I care for
– spiritual stuff
– do all my work on time
– pick up that forgotten hobby
– start a business
– go back to school
– coach my employees
– help someone else improve their time management skills

My intention is to give unique answers to these questions using all the thinking that’s resident in 2Time Labs, including the fundamental principles I listed at the beginning.

Oh, and I should mention…. I want it to be fun!

As a research location, 2Time Labs has been pretty dry… I guess I have been trying to recapture my early days in AT&T Bell Labs!  Maybe it’s just the way research has to be… focused on facts.

I’m shifting some of my time away from done with that — now I want the solutions offered at the new MyTimeDesign to be helpful, easy to learn, engaging and fun-filled.  I plan to devise and offer more simulations / training games, more quizzes and more advice geared towards White, Yellow and Orange Belts (with the occasional bit of Green Belt advice thrown in.)

As you may know, I recently enhanced my online training program, MyTimeDesign 1.1.Plus+ with some powerful simulations, using the very best e-learning techniques that exist.  This is just the beginning, and signal a move away from learning by listening/reading, to learning by playing/doing/experimenting.  You can get a simple idea of what’s coming in the future by checking: http://www.knowledgefactor.com/blog.

This is a far cry from the days when you’d buy a time management or productivity book, and have someone tell you “Here’s what I do, that you don’t, that you should.”

Instead, you’ll be able to discover what you don’t know, or aren’t doing, in engaging virtual environments.  Once you have figured this out, I want to make it fun to take the next step ; to create habit-changing plans that  have a super-high chance for success.  And… if I can use that word again… I want it to be fun!

Thanks for being my partner on this journey – it’s an exciting time and we’ll all benefit.


P.S. At the moment, I believe that the first topic I’ll focus on will be a meta-issue…. how do you help someone else improve their skills?  Stay tuned!