072: Laura Vanderkam on calming the chaos

Season #8 Episode #72

In this episode, we interview author and time-tracking expert Laura Vanderkam.

Laura Vanderkam is the author of several time management and productivity books, including the new Tranquility by Tuesday: 9 Ways to Calm the Chaos and Make Time for What Matters, along with Juliet’s School of Possibilities, Off the Clock, I Know How She Does It, What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, and 168 Hours. Her work has appeared in publications including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, and Fortune. She is the host of the podcast Before Breakfast and the co-host, with Sarah Hart-Unger, of the podcast Best of Both Worlds. She lives outside Philadelphia with her husband and five children.

We loved chatting with Laura Vanderkam in this episode about time tracking. The topics we covered included:

  • thinking about time management as a strategy to make life more memorable and fun
  • outsourcing – how to make the decision on what to outsource and let go of the guilt – particularly for traditionally female tasks
  • getting your kids to think about time management and to establish good mindsets about time from an early age
  • the nine time management rules from Laura’s latest book Tranquility by Tuesday
  • the benefits of a weekly planning session and why Laura likes to plan on Fridays
  • creating a backup slot in your calendar to make your schedule more resilient
  • the benefit of having two things in your week worth remembering – one big adventure and one little adventure
  • the importance of sleep – and to give yourself a bedtime  – that if you get the amount of sleep you need every single night and you’ll have far more energy and life will feel more in control.



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