How I, Justin, am living the life I want and increased my productivity
Not enough time, motivation struggles, e.g. You have things you must do, and things you want to do. The things you must do will always come first, and the things you want to do comes second.
It can happen that you’ll get demotivated. You do the “must do” first, and the “want to” second. The hurdle feels big, and when you’re done with the “must do”, you feel like you deserve relaxation. You lack motivation of your “want to do” things. You start doing other less important things. You get lost overthinking, watching television, gaming, or other distractions.
I wanted to make myself fully responsible of my own time. I did reflections but tracking time manually on paper or an extra app felt inefficient. I didn’t live the life I wanted. I was distracted too much and didn’t have a clear overview of what I did. This made reflecting hard. Only proper insights of my actions could help. So, I created Segro.
I worked full-time for a software company. It is an amazing growing company with a lot of opportunities. Next to my full-time job, I had a few clients for my own company. I also had a relationship, and in my darkest days I spent 100 hours a week working.
I felt locked. I had so much ideas, but I never got the chance to create them.
The first move towards freedom
I decided to quit my job. The first months I finished the projects I had for my own clients.
I noticed that being rich in today’s world is not only about money. Being rich could be expressed in 3 ways of freedom:
- Financial independency: got enough money to buy whatever you want
- Location independency: go wherever you want
- Time independency: not bound to activities you must do at a specific time
After that I started freelancing once a week. I managed to create a small amount of money to live. Money to pay my rent, food, and stay fit for example.
This resulted in financial stability, location independency and 6 days of time independency.
The bottleneck of time independency
This is amazing, but it also has a bottleneck. I had 6 days a week to decide what to do. Without a “must do”, you’re fully responsible on acting. This also means continuous self-motivation. It can be hard to spend the time right.
For example: you’re working full-time. But today you wake up and you just don’t feel like it. You must go to your work anyways. Once there, you realize it is not that bad and you enjoy your day.
Now imagine the situation when you must motivate yourself. What if, for any circumstance, you wake up and you just don’t feel like it? Will you do it anyways? And what if this situation happens 50 times a year?
I noticed that the days I didn’t feel like it, I just watched a movie or did something else. This time began to increase, and after a month I noticed I worked only 20 hours a week.
It was mentally hard. Because the time I wasn’t working, I felt like I should. I felt guilty watching a movie. I worked hard for this situation and took risks. And then I’m spending my time not wisely. How to solve this?
Setting a time-related goal
I had a goal of working at least 40 hours a week. This was time-related, which makes it easy to conform if I reached it.
I decided to track all the time I spent. If I wasn’t working 40 hours a week, what did I do? If I noticed I watched 30 hours a week of movies for example, what did I achieve with it?
I did the time tracking in my calendar app. I have the default app both on my MacBook and my iPhone and it works seamlessly. At the end of the week, I did reflections. Unfortunately, I had to do this manually. Adding up the event times manually was very time consuming.
This is where I created Segro: for calendar insights so you can reflect your behavior. Once I created the app, I noticed it could also be used for planning. I can see what the balance of my life is next week in an instant.
Over time, I noticed that I put more effort into what I really wanted. I launched 2 startups the last 2 months, and I’m feeling very good. At any moment a day, I can check in the app if I’m still on track for my weekly 40 hours of work goal.
Being more relaxed while relaxing
Now, if I want to relax, I am truly relaxed. I don’t need to do something else and I’m not relaxing anymore to avoid responsibilities. I first go towards my goals, and if I’m on track, I deserve my relaxation time. The process of working towards a goal and to see how it is going, is very fulfilling.
Tracking time and finding balance
A time tracker is not something new. A lot of people already use time trackers. The problem is that they only track the time that feel like a “must do”. This is by default a demotivating think to do. Because you will be working towards a negative goal.
A better way is to reflect all the parts of your life. When you sport, work, leisure, eat, cook, and more. Only from a total picture, setting goals is easy. If you only want to put in more hours but there is no time left, you’re stuck. But when you have an overview, you can see exactly what you want to do more, but also what you want to do less.
We can’t create extra hours. We all have 168 hours a week. But we can adjust the balance.
Segro let you plan and track time in one single tool: the calendar you already use. There is no need to adapt to a new program. After installing, you can directly get insights from the past without extra actions.
I easily gained insight to my work effort of every single month with the app. Then I created a line graph to show the growth over time.
You can see that my productivity more than doubled in September compared to March.
Below I added screenshots as proof.
Average work hours per week: 17:21
Average work hours per week: 20:30
Average work hours per week: 24:21
Average work hours per week: 29:19
Average work hours per week: 31:55
Average work hours per week: 41:18
Average work hours per week: 40:10