Hold for One

On two separate occasions, I’ve heard talks focused on the “in between spaces” of your life. These are the white spaces in your schedule and the off-book moments when nothing is required of you. It’s during these “free” times when we come up with our best ideas, fall into self-discovery or make breakthroughs.

We should seek out and protect these times. But it’s so hard. There are few examples of nature abhorring a vacuum better than the empty calendar. It always fills up.

One trick I’ve started using to steal more of these slices of time is keeping my [HOLD] times.

If there’s a future slot of time I want to make sure stays open for a meeting or something, I’ll usually add it on the calendar with a description like this: [HOLD] Kickoff Meeting. In the past, if the appointment or work time didn’t pan out, I’d delete it so something else could occupy that time.

Now, I leave it as a “hold time” and use it to do nothing (a la Peter Gibbons). Try it for yourself.

Enjoy the spaces between.

This first appeared in David’ (almost) bi-weekly newsletter, Notes from the Field.

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