Time Management & The Urge Jar

I joined SCS starting in April, because time management has been a focal area for me and I could not resist passing up April’s work. I decided to continue focusing on time management work in May and discussed time management a few times in my coaching sessions in May. In my last coaching session, we discussed using the urge jar for time management. I started doing this three days ago and was putting a ‘bead’ (I am using thumb tacks right now haha) in my urge jar each time I started a task on time (including my wake-up time); completed a task within a reasonable period of time in relation to my schedule; and took a proper scheduled break (as I tend to have a habit of skipping breaks and working late).

A big struggle for me is creating a realistic schedule and sticking to it. I have difficulties estimating the time it will take me to accomplish tasks, especially taking into account all of the interruptions I have throughout my day (I work with youth in the foster care system, so I am required to answer various phone calls and provide support for behaviours/crises, etc.). This made it difficult for me to decipher when I should put a ‘bead’ in my urge jar as I do not always complete tasks “on time” or follow my schedule as intended. My intention is to start scheduling in time for the unexpected time-consuming tasks throughout my work days, but that is obviously not an exact science. I was thinking of leaving the afternoon unscheduled, but now I think I should potentially schedule catch-up time between each task to account for these interruptions. Can I get any advice on how to create my schedule to account for unexpected interruptions and urgent tasks? Right now I also find myself pushing tasks to the next day, because I do not accomplish them by the end of my work day.

Urge Jar: I almost want to give myself a ‘bead’ regardless of what time it is so long as I accomplish a task that I set out to do today… but then my schedule starts becoming essentially a to-do list. It feels good to put the ‘bead’ in the jar and know that I accomplished another task. I am unsure, however, if that approach would be more motivating and less restrictive or if it would produce an undesired result.

This is currently the criteria for which I am putting a ‘bead’ in my urge jar:
– Waking up when planned (or before)
– Going to bed when planned
– Accomplishing tasks when planned
– Taking proper scheduled breaks

I am also curious about how I should approach my urge jar wins during my scheduled free time or weekends when I do not typically make a schedule for myself? Is there a way I can still use the urge jar throughout the day during these times?

I am also interested in making the urge jar more of a habit tracker jar and including activities like the following as well as the aforementioned:
– Doing a thought download
– Doing a model
– Creating a daily schedule (either the night before or the morning of)
– Reviewing my daily schedule (at the end of the day/next day) to evaluate how to better estimate times and create schedules in the future
– Meditate
– Do yoga or workout
– Clean my home

Any suggestions and ideas/critiques would be extremely helpful. Thank you!