My health and some thoughts on time management

24 Sep

I am feeling much better today and will go back to teaching this afternoon. I was out of commission for Sunday and Monday, indeed I was in hospital for a good portion of that time. But I spent Monday night and Tuesday at home, felt well enough to walk the dog Tuesday afternoon and even finished a revision on a manuscript that is  under review. I am grateful for the wonderful and very professional staff at Healthspan, the power of antibiotics, the understanding of my department chair, and, most important of all, the assistance of my physician wife.

It will be a little while before I am back walking on the treadmill, a great disappointment, because that is where I study foreign languages and it may be a few weeks before I return to the yoga studio. I will continue to practice at home to the extent that I am physically able. I resumed meditation yesterday, after missing two days.

Illness is said to focus our thoughts on our mortality. Perhaps, but I have been thinking a lot about time management. Not how much time we have but how well we use the time we have. A few days ago I linked to a post by Tyler Cowen about his time management strategies. Another economist, Austin Frakt, has responded with his, much longer, list. I will be interested in trying his suggestion of listening to podcasts at twice their normal speed. Some of his tips, such as working paper free, involve trade offs. I now read my newspapers entirely on Kindle, but both personal experience and evidence that suggests that material read on paper is better remembered.

Email remains one of the big problems of time management and I am continually amazed by how much of my work has become handling email. Thus, I am always looking for an email panacea. Dan Ariely has an interesting approach, but it may be most helpful for people who have large public profiles.

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