I never appreciated my white board timer as much as I did when I became a full time teacher. Timers help students bring recognition to the amount of time expected to complete an assignment, and how much of that time they have truly been being productive. I use timers when doing multiple tasks throughout a class period and to also assist with transitions from different activities such as: reading, discussion, writing etc.
Because they are so beneficial in the classroom. I also use them when completing my “adulting tasks.” If I know that I need to fill out many different forms of documentation, grade, write a blog, call colleagues etc. I will set up a timer to be sure I am accomplishing those tasks. For example I’ll set aside 2 hours and set four 30 minute timers for: filling out forms, making phone calls, grading, and blogging. It may seem like silly advice, but it helps bring understanding to exactly what I’m doing with my time and if I am being productive.
So, if you are feeling overwhelmed. Utilize a timer, and be productive.