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After interviewing dozens of successful, happy people, she realized that they allocate their time differently than most of us. Instead of letting the daily grind crowd out the important stuff, they start by making sure there's time for the important stuff. They focus on what they do best and what only they can do. When plans go wrong and they run out of time, only their lesser priorities suffer. It's not always easy, but the payoff is enormous. Vanderkam shows that it really is possible to sleep eight hours a night, exercise five days a week, take piano lessons, and write a novel without giving up quality time for work, family, and other things that really matter. The key is to start with a blank slate and to fill up your 168 hours only with things that deserve your time. Of course, you probably won't read to your children at 2:00 am, or skip a Wednesday morning meeting to go hiking, but you can cut back on how much you watch TV, do laundry, or spend time on other less fulfilling activities. Vanderkam shares creative ways to rearrange your schedule to make room for the things that matter most.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Marc on 08-04-10
Ironically, this book takes too much time
There is actually some good stuff in here and useful tips. Yet despite the mantra of analyze where time is spent and pare down to essentials, it is about 3 times longer than it should be, with endless repetitive stories and way too much unecessary detail. I'd say still mostly worth the listen but be sure to clear your calendar first...
19 of 19 people found this review helpful
By Tiffany on 11-04-10
I really wanted to like this book
I agree with the premise of this book, and was anxious to find practical, applicable tips. I felt it was taking a while to get to what I was waiting for, but after a few hours of listening, I couldn't take it any more. Perhaps part of it was the tone of the narrator, but I felt I was being lectured and condescended to by a 30 year old who seems to have figured out how to manage every minute of her day, even with a child. I don't doubt she's figured it out, but I'm not sure she's the kind of person I'd be friends with. My life simply doesn't follow my best laid plans like hers apparently do, even if I were to hire out a lot of my responsibilities.
I found Julie Morgenstern's "Organized from the inside out" and her "time mapping" tips MUCH more helpful, and not nearly as condescending or lecturing.
26 of 27 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By D. Davies on 11-05-10
I thought that this would be a useful book, something to give me advice on how to manage what I perceive as my 'limited' time. However, like the other review (William), I soon began to get annoyed by my in-car passenger.
The narrator's voice soon begins to grate on you. Add to this the content which (echoing 'William') appears to be a little unstructured at times and you'll soon be switching back to the radio.
To be fair, some of the early content is useful and highlights that you're never really flat out working or playing and it suggest logging your days so you can gain a true view of your time usage.
So, some good content. However, the majority of the time the narrator is just reading off a string of useless statistical data from 'The American Time Use Survey' - data which doesn't really help but simply blinds you with numbers.
Most of the book's content falls into the category of in-depth reports of named individuals' lives, telling us how wonderful these people are, but providing very little in the way of useful advice to the listener.
I like to listen to entire audiobooks, even if I'm struggling half way through. However, in Chapter 7 the narrator began telling me how I can save time by getting all my meals cooked for me by a 'personal chef' - this would save me X hours by removing the need for shopping for food, preparation time and cooking (!!!). Then, I gave up and stopped the audiobook for good (half way through Chapter 7) after she moved on to recipes for meals I could prepare in minutes - she read out the recipes for about 5 or 6 meals, listing the ingredients! At that point I stopped the book and vowed not to complete it and that I would delete it as soon as I got home. It's gone - deleted.
Summary: some interesting advice in the early chapters but far too many useless statistics and lengthy/detailed stories about people the author has met.
Avoid this book, save your time and money.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful
By William on 08-19-10
Full of tips but lacks structure.
I was very excited about listening to this book, it seemed to present a completely new way of looking at the working week, it chunks of 168 hours. The author does present some good ways of plan your time however I felt it severely lacked structure and sounded a bit like someone in my passenger seat who wont stop talking (my wife sounds very similar!).
In summary I personally will be more careful before buying random books which seem good on the front cover in future, this book is not everyones cup of tea but it could well be some peoples so have a good listen to the sample before purchasing!
2 of 3 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Dan on 10-19-15
Repetitive but good
There were some really nice useful points in this and I'll definitely be outsourcing my non core competencies. It did however feel quite Repetitive and repeated certain points a lot. but maybe that's just a teaching technique.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
By Anonymous User on 08-28-17
Worth a read for general ideas
I enjoyed this book and have learned some useful tips as well as some VERY useful statistics to encourage my in-laws to be less critical of the cleanliness of my house. I have a happy, well-balanced daughter and am carving out time for what counts!