How I Track My Time For Maximum Productivity

Reading Time – 8 Minutes

A shot of a hand of a rich man in 1800s New York City holding a beautiful open pocket watch.

Over the past 20 years, I’ve been able to pull off some pretty impressive things in my business life by only working a relatively small number of hours per week.

It’s true that since about 2019 I’ve been working longer hours, by choice, meaning about 9-12 hours per day 6-7 days per week. That’s only because in 2018 I chose to put the pedal to the metal on my financial goals.

However, up until 2019, I was making an income in the high six figures only working a faction of my current hours, often working just 3-4 days per week most years since around 2004.

Even after 2019 when I decided to crank my work hours higher, some pretty amazing things happened. In less than two years, here’s what I experienced:

  • My online company (which is one of three companies I had at the time) quickly grew from four people to 21.
  • I scaled another company (and shut one down during the pandemic).
  • My income went into the seven figures, even during the pandemic when everyone freaked out.
  • My personal life, which was already amazing, became far better (in ways I discuss over at my other blog).
  • I lost weight and gained muscle mass.
  • I improved my health, sleep, mental focus, and testosterone. All of this despite the fact that I entered into my 50s, a time when most men start to wind everything down in their lives.
  • I got legal residency in five different countries all over the world.
  • I moved out of the USA and dropped my taxes to a fraction of what they were.
  • I improved my family life.
  • All of this was because of one reason: time management. Of course there were other reasons but the granddaddy of them all is that I have always made time management an overriding, non-negotiable priority in my life.

I’m about to show you how I track and monitor my time since many of you have asked about this.

One word of warning. I do not recommend you do what I’m about to describe.

Normally I give advice, things that I know work that I think you should do. Today is different. Today, I’m just going to show you what I do. The problem is that I’m a time management maniac on steroids. Many of you are going to get completely turned off by what I’m about to describe. You’re going to think it’s extreme overkill. And guess what? It probably is… for you.

For most people, what I do is indeed way too much and you shouldn’t do it. But I’m not like most people. Not only do I live several alternative lifestyles (Unchained CEO, Alpha Male 2.0, and Five Flags) but I live all of these lifestyles to the absolute extreme. On top of all that, I have/had extremely big goals in all of those areas, most of which I’ve already achieved and some I haven’t yet.

So I’m going to give you an extreme time management system for an extreme guy. If you’re an extreme guy too, feel free to follow it. If you’re not, and you probably aren’t, then instead use it as a basis for some ideas that may help you become more productive and happy.

Here’s What I Do

First, I use an app called Toggl (and there are many good ones; this is the one I happen to use) that is on both my phone and my laptop. This is a timer app that times and tracks your time. You can create categories, time yourself, and assign blocks of timed time to these categories.

The categories I’ve set up for myself are:

  • Morning Routine – This includes getting ready for the morning, showering, etc.
  • Exercise
  • Buffer – This is my SW work, like admin, management, financial work, stuff like that.
  • Client Implementation – This is when I am doing something for paying clients or customers, like consulting, coaching, leading a coaching meeting, doing a live seminar, etc.
  • Wife – Time I spend with Pink Firefly, both in person or if it’s remote (phone or Zoom)
  • Content Creation – Time creating content (blog articles, newsletters, YouTube videos, Instagram vids, whatever)
  • Off – This is a catch-all category that includes anything when I’m not working, not exercising, and not spending time with my wife. It can range from going to the grocery store to spending time with “friends” to cleaning my kitchen to watching a YouTube video or reading a book.
  • Engagement – Time spent answering comments on my social media and blogs.
  • Expansion – The most important category; this is my IW work, any work that improves my income (creating new products, improving or new marketing, etc)
  • Product – My second most important category, also IW work, this is time spent improving existing products I sell.
  • ON Time – Time spent working ON my business instead of IN my business, strategic planning
  • Warm Marketing – Time spent marketing anything to my existing, warm audience

Once again, do NOT copy these categories. They won’t apply to you. These are the time categories that apply only to me at this time in my life.

Then, every day, all day and all night long, 100% of the time I’m awake, I track my time. This means my Toggl timer is going nonstop for about 16 hours a day. The only time I turn it off is when I go to sleep (which I track using my Oura ring, more on that in a moment).

Instead of turning the timer off, instead, I just switch it to the new task I’m working on. For example, if I’m writing a blog article, Toggl is timing Content. As soon as I get up to go eat lunch, I switch the timer to Off, but the timer is still going, it’s just now counting time in the “Off” category. If I then go work out, I switch it to Exercise. When I sit back down to work on making the 90 Day Business Builder better, I switch it to Product.

On and on this goes all day long until I go to bed at night, at which time I finally turn the timer off. During my sleep my Oura ring tracks exactly how long I was in bed and how long I was physically asleep, two numbers I pay attention to the next morning, and course correct if I see they’re starting to waver.

Then the next morning, as soon as I get out of bed, I start Toggl again with Morning Routine and do it all over again.

Every Sunday morning, one of my team members pulls the data from Toggl from the prior week and puts int into a spreadsheet that I review every Sunday afternoon. This sheet shows me:

  • The total number of hours for every category of time I spent in the prior week.
  • Daily averages for all of the categories.
  • The percentage of time I spend in Buffer (which I want to keep as low as possible).
  • The number of days per week I spent doing the most important work (I call these Focus Days).
  • A few other items.

This is a very important report to me because it shows me if I’m on or off track for my goals. Here are a few examples of how I interpret the data and make changes.

  • If my Buffer or Warm Marketing is high, that’s a red flag. It means I need to delegate more tasks to my team immediately. These two categories don’t make me ANY new money so I need to keep Buffer work (SW) as low as humanly possible (you can never get Buffer/SW to zero, but you can keep it low) and I need to keep Warm Marketing to only the few things I absolutely can’t delegate (like making a YouTube video promoting something).
  • If my Off is high, that means either I had a weird week (like I had to move, or deal with paperwork or overhead in my personal life, or had an unusual family event, or I was traveling, etc) or it means I was spending too much time in my very exciting and compelling personal life, which is fun but not good for my goals, so I immediately course correct on that stuff when I need to.
  • Client Implementation can be present but shouldn’t be too high. If it gets too high, that means I’m selling too many services that require my personal time to implement, which is not good, since if I’m personally involved with serving clients I can’t scale my companies at the same time. Several times in my career I’ve made this mistake. Under this system, I will never make it again.
  • It’s similar for Wife and Exercise. They’re certainly important and they need to be there, but they can’t be hours upon hours a week, or else I’m not focused on where I need to be, which is scaling my companies. (This will change in April of 2026 when I shift into the next phase of my life, but not yet.)
  • Expansion and Product are my two most important categories by far. Those are my IW. Unfortunately, these are also the two hardest categories to work on since all of the other categories are constantly screaming for my attention. If I see a week with little or zero Expansion or Product, I consider that week a bad week and I need to course correct fast. If I see some, that’s good. If I see a lot (which is rare), that’s a huge win.

Most people who say “they work hard” or that they’re “already doing the right things” actually have no idea if they are or aren’t. They aren’t tracking it. They’re being emotional, not objective. I can tell you for a fact that people are absolutely dreadful at accurately measuring where they spend their time. Most people have no fucking idea, including business owners and/or people who think they “work hard.”

Also, “working hard” doesn’t mean sitting at your computer moving your mouse around and typing. It also doesn’t mean you’re thinking about your work. It also doesn’t mean scrolling through social media on your phone. It also doesn’t mean reading or listening to business books.

A lot of people think they “work so hard” because they put in an 8-hour workday. They don’t realize that the average person only gets about 2.5 hours of real work done from an 8-hour workday.

Whereas when I work 8 hours, I’m actually putting in 8 hours of real work. Also, a sizeable percentage of that work is ultra-high-quality work that improves my life and moves the needle forward. It’s not just the busy work most people do.

Under this system, I can’t bullshit myself. I know exactly, to the minute, how hard I’m working and exactly what I’m working on. The numbers don’t lie.

If most people did what I did, they’d probably start crying the first time they reviewed their Sunday report. Categories like “Video Games,” “TV,” “Smoking Weed,” “Social Media,” “Porn,” “Wife,” “Girlfriend,” and/or “Drinking,” would be massive and overwhelming. Even worse, what little work showing up on that report would be 100% Buffer and nothing else. (If you have a job or do gigs, that’s 100% Buffer, folks, because you’re locked into your income no matter how good you are. This is yet another reason why you need your own business ASAP.)

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Question of the Week

Is THIS A Good Country To Move To?

Instead of giving you a specific question from the audience this week, I’m going to answer a question I get a lot. I’m going to do this occasionally since if many people are asking the same question it means that much of the audience needs help with this.

The question is this: “Do you think <insert country here> would be a good place to live / make a good flag?”

The problem is that there’s no way for me to answer that question because I don’t know what your priorities are. If you’re a 26-year-old single man, your priorities in a country are probably things like low cost of living and cute girls. If you’re a woman with three kids, it’s probably things like low crime and good schools. If you’re a 48-year-old millionaire with a serious girlfriend or wife, it’s probably things like low taxes, a strong economy, and good banks.

I love Dubai. I love Paraguay. But the only reason I like these two places, other than the fact they are both rapidly rising countries instead of collapsing clusterfucks like the USA/Canada/Europe, is because they appeal to my priorities as a 52-year-old, healthy, high-income, married-but-non-monogamous, introverted, workaholic business owner. Your priorities may be the same, similar, or quite different from mine.

So the answer to that question is always, “I depends on what your priorities are.”

So the correct way to ask that question is, “My priorities are X, Y, and Z. So would <insert country here> be a good country for me?”

Please note that I said X, Y, and Z, just three things. You can’t list more than three things. Otherwise, you’re going to enter into Utopia Fantasyland looking for a perfect country that doesn’t exist. All the time I get guys asking me things like, “I want a country that has great weather, low taxes, low cost of living, great government, great infrastructure, low crime, no woke shit, super hot white girls, and everyone speaks English. What country would be good for me?”

Well, dumbass, the answer is none, because that country only exists in your jerkoff fantasies. No country on modern-day planet Earth has all of that and never will.

The closest you can get to that in real life is to find two countries, each with half of those things (or three countries with one-third of them), and split your year between two or three different countries as I do. But most people aren’t willing to do this. Just get two or three priorities, that’s it, and I promise you’ll find a place you’ll like a lot more (or at least hate less) than your current collapsing Western country.

Leave your comment below, but be sure to follow the Five Simple Rules.

4 Comments
  • Matt
    Posted at 03:54 am, 12th June 2024

    Thx for great article. Since I started to work longer again, apart from time, I’ve been analysing with Android Digital Wellbeing app time spent on different apps. Can you please share your current daily averages for all of the categories and what are your desired ones at this stage of life?

  • Simon fletcher
    Posted at 12:17 am, 13th June 2024

    Love this one, thanks Caleb. It really gives a glimpse what to do when comes to time management.

    If one can head towards tracking time like you do, one can certainly really increase their chances to obtain success.

    Let’s say you’re an absolute moron when it comes to time management, and you are in your words basically a LISG, working a commission based job, with no real responsibilities other than making ends meet, What 3 initial steps would you recommend to that person to improve their time management skills?

    Thanks

  • Caleb Jones
    Posted at 12:36 pm, 13th June 2024

    Can you please share your current daily averages for all of the categories and what are your desired ones at this stage of life?

    I’d really rather not because these numbers are completely useless to the audience and I don’t want anyone copying them, which is what tends to happen when I share data like that.

  • Caleb Jones
    Posted at 12:38 pm, 13th June 2024

    Let’s say you’re an absolute moron when it comes to time management, and you are in your words basically a LISG, working a commission based job, with no real responsibilities other than making ends meet, What 3 initial steps would you recommend to that person to improve their time management skills?

    1. Set some one year, three year, quarterly, and monthly goals.
    2. Start working from a to-do list every day that you prepare the evening before.
    3. Start planning the next 3-7 days in advance.

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