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In the latest entry from my Pink Slip Diary: It’s Friday. I think. Every day feels like Saturday lately. Monday doesn’t have that dreaded feel. Wednesday no longer has that hump day feel nor does Friday have that exuberant release. I’m still getting accustomed to this whole happily and temporarily unemployed status as my fast-paced days flow into the next into the next into the next.

I’d love to start a discussion to see what’s been working for others in terms of time management. For instance, I’ve found my days have never been busier and more active (so much for taking time to smell the roses. I have managed, however, to watch twenty whole minutes of Oprah in real time at the gym. Haven’t done that in years.)

My freelance work has been out of control which has been a blessing and a lot of fun. I’ve started doing career coaching on my own; again, rewarding and fun. I’ve re-channeled the full-time job search into a more meaningful one.

Rather than going on interviews just to get employed asap, I want to be sure I’m happy with the roles I’m pursuing. (BTW, in previous posts some questions were asked to how I landed interviews. Funny thing about being in recruiting is most of my colleagues are recruiters who constantly network with other recruiters. They’ve been amazing.)

Anyway, I have one requirement today: to buy a day planner. My to-do lists are quite lengthy and sometimes have subcategories (so not kidding). I decided one way to manage the time is to literally schedule everything down to the hour ranging from phone interviews to looking into COBRA/pension stuff to doing errands.

It’s nice having the freedom to do everything I need to accomplish but I’m finding the lack of structure (as in no beginning nor end to a day, it’s all one big blur) need to be improved. I also created an excel spreadsheet with my ta-da lists: everything that gets crossed off the to-do list (hence, the ta-da) that needs to be followed up on.

What’s been working for you in terms of time management and structuring your days? What’s not working? Please feel free to share so we can learn and help each other through this exciting transition.


  1. Janine

    Vicki, You are so right! I’ve found that staying organized is key to accomplishing goals on a daily basis. One day flows into the next, seemlessly. I’m so busy between seeking out my own career opportunities, helping others to find a job, talking with my own career coach, leading a job club, exercising, and everything else I need to accomplish, but now without deadlines, it is easy to let things fall through the cracks. I miss the time deadlines. I can self impose them, but it’s just not the same as a 9 to 5! When you discover the secret – do tell!

  2. Megan

    The seamless transition is so true! I have found that treating my unemployment as a full time job has helped tremendously. On Sunday, I write down everything I need to accomplish during the week (things always get added but it gives me a start) then I organize them by importance and go from there. I do this for everything: phone calls, errands, household “chores” and everything else. Then I work during the day until my husband gets home, then I consider my work day over. Of course I have my 1 year old at home so some days I get a million things accomplished with his “help” and other days we just get the basics but either way I have all week. It is regimented but in a relaxed way if that is possible. Then at night we play with our son, have dinner, go to a movie or hang out all together and don’t have the worry of the to-do list hanging over our heads. I also make sure our housework is done during the week so that we don’t have to do it on weekends… we save weekends for the things we want to do. So far this has worked pretty well but I would love to know what other people are doing that works…. it’s hard to believe how busy we have become since I have become unemployed.

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