In The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play, Dr. Neil Fiore writes about a time management tool he called the “Un-Schedule.” His premise is that many people procrastinate because they tend to put their own personal interests last and that makes them resent doing all the other stuff in their workaday lives. If you feel like you are procrastinating because of you’re not making time for yourself, an Unschedule can help you identify where your time is going and where you can find and prioritize time for “play.” After having used a printed version I found online several years ago, which Dr. Fiore also has a sample Unschedule and more description about it here, I created a digital version that allowed me to modify the Unschedule then reprint it as needed. I now use this template with my coaching clients to co-develop an Unschedule and work through procrastination issues together.
Here’s a video tutorial of using Unschedule and the template for you to use!
First, click here to open up the template to create a copy of this Google Sheets template. (Note: you must have and be logged into your own Google account to do this.)
Next, you can rename the template whatever you would like and I would recommend starring your new Unschedule so that it’s easy to retrieve later in Google Sheets. (You may also download this template for use in desktop spreadsheet software, like Microsoft Excel or LibreOffice Calc.)
Finally, you can watch the video I’ve put together below, so you can get a feel for the system and how I’ve modified it for my own uses. Comment below with questions or comments, or feel free to contact me.
Here’s to your productive life!
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This is really great! Thanks Ray for sharing this.
You’re very welcome, Cat. Happy to be of service!
It really works! I have been following the tips for the last 4 days and it has kept me on track every single day. My energy level has gone up and I stay motivated and focused all day. Thanks so much for this wonderful resource Ray!
So glad this is working so well for you, Nam!
Excellent tool and video
Thanks, Ralf! I hope it works for you in practice. Please circle back with questions.
Thank you so much for making the online version available. You have cleared yet another hurdle that I might procrastinate about making the schedule work for me.
You’re quite welcome, Thomas! Good luck!
Just listened to the book at the gym and wished there was something out there to walk me through the “unschedule” more completely. Thank you for doing so!
Glad I could help out, Dean!
Hi :) Thank you for your guide. I have a question and I would be very grateful if you could answer it. I’m struggling with creating unschedule. I’m a teacher and a student at the same time and I want to work on my dissertation using this method. I am wondering if I should schedule my usual work hours and classsess at university or just focus on leisure, hobbies, sleep and time for eating and commuting?
Hi, Mandy! Great question, and you’re welcome for the video tutorial on the Unschedule. I believe it’s important to have a realistic view of available time, so you should put in all activities (not just a select few) that fill up time in your days. This way, you’re able to see what’s left after necessities (work and classes, hygiene, food and sleep) then “fun” is put in, then what’s left for you to work on your dissertation. Good luck with your studies and research! Let me know if you have any other questions.
You’re welcome, Mona!