Campfire 92: How To Design Time To Create Happier Hours & Happier Lives

General 0 replies 641 views Tags:  WXO CampfireTime DesignCassie Holmes

Cassie Holmes is a Professor at the Anderson School of Management at UCLA, where she teaches a wildly popular MBA class about the science of happiness and time design. 

In her new book, Happier Hour, she brings together over 15 years of research to reveal empirically based insights into how we can make the most of our hours, both in our personal lives and the experiences we design for others.

For Campfire 92, we invited her to share some of her groundbreaking research and simple strategies for changing our perception of time, before applying them to how we design our own experiences.

The full write-up will be coming soon – but for now, here are a few top takeaways, links and questions that emerged. Add your comments below!

  • When we’re happier in ourselves, we’re healthier, more helpful and more useful members of society.
  • There’s a term for the feeling of having too much to do and not enough time to do it: time poverty. 46% of Americans report feeling time poor. It’s most acute in women, dual-career couples and the parents of young children, but touches people in all walks of life and around the globe.
  • Perhaps unsurprisingly, people with too little discretionary time – less than two hours per day – are less happy. But more interestingly, those with too much time – more than five hours – are also less happy.
  • It isn’t about being time rich, but about making the time you have rich.
  • We need to prioritise the things that really matter, and not let our time get filled up with the things that don't.
  • Transform routine into ritual!
  • We may not have a lot of time, but it doesn’t require a lot of time for an activity to have a big impact. When we create a ritual, it also increases the quality of the time we spend in anticipation and reflection of it.
  • Create commitment devices to protect your time – and make it a no-phone zone.
  • Research shows that exercise is a significant mood booster. It reduces our anxiety, increases our sense of efficacy, and lessens our sense of time poverty. 
  • If we make sure we have uninterrupted time for purposeful work – whether this be writing, coming up with creative ideas, or otherwise moving towards our bigger goals – we’re more likely to become immersed in what we’re doing, enter a state of flow, and lose all sense of time.

Some follow-up questions to ask yourself:

  • How might you turn the routine elements of your experience into a ritual?
  • How can you convince people that your experience is worthy of their time and attention?
  • How can you pack a big impact into a short timeframe?

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