One of the activities that we engaged in lately was the construction of a time diary. Here, not only was I able to tabulate the activities that I do on my weekdays and weekends but I also got a chance to know the hours I spend doing each activity and also note the activity that takes much of my time. As a result of the data extracted from the time diary, I am in this paper going to describe my overall time use, the relation between my time use and the factors of time deepening and time famine, the emotions and stress I develop while engaging in certain activities and finally how the findings reflect on aspects health.
From the time diary, the activities were divided into three sections: working hours, which comprised of my study activities, the personal hours, which comprised the daily routines I engaged in like eating and sleeping, and the leisure hours, which constituted the things I do when I am free. The statistical findings revealed that during weekday one, I spent 20% on personal activity, 40% on leisure and 40% on work activities. As per the statistical findings of day two, I spent 35%, 33% and 32% of my hours in work, personal and leisure activities respectively. To be precise, I used 6 hours and 8 minutes for working, 6 hours and 16 minutes for personal activities and 3 hours and 8 minutes in leisure. On the third day which was a weekend, I spent 8 hours 23 minutes on leisure activities and this occupied 64% of my time, 26% was spent on my personal activities which took 3 hours and 25 minutes, and I only spent 10% which is 1 hour and 17 minutes on my working activities. If a combined analysis is to be done, this means that I spend 13 hours and 33 minutes in work activities, 12 hours and 31 minutes on personal activities and 20 hours and 37 minutes in leisure engagements.
I know for a fact that I do not miss engaging in leisure activities even during my working days. However, I am surprised that even on weekdays, the hours I spend in leisure engagements are almost similar to the hours I spend working. Since leisure is appearing to be a concern, it is notable that the activity that occupied most of my leisure time was movie and games, which occupied 71%, 55% and 38% of my time during the three days respectively. Just as it was mentioned in class, I fall into the class of the majority as most of my leisure time is spent alongside my friends. From the above statistical findings, it is evident that there is a huge difference between my weekdays and weekends. This difference emanates from my engagements in leisure activities and fewer engagements in work activities during the weekends.
Time famine and Time deepening
The terms “time famine” and “time deepening” are crucial in the analysis of my time use. According to Perlow (1999, time famine is a condition whereby one is too strained with their personal and work activities that they lack time for leisure engagements. As per the above statistics, there is no denying that I am not suffering from time famine. Supporting this is the fact that my leisure activities occupy most of my time during weekends and weekdays. In a way, this means that I have allocated enough time for leisure amidst my personal and working hours, which insinuates that time famine is not a problem for me.
It is not every time that we find ourselves engaging in one activity. At times, we are stuck between various tasks simultaneously. It is this aspect of finding ourselves wanting to perform two or more tasks at the same time that is called time deepening (Millen, 2000). Based on my time frame, I am lucky to be among those people who are not affected by time deepening. The secret behind not being affected by time deepening is my aspect of the organization. I usually make a to-do list, which captures the activities am supposed to do at a specific time, and this gives me the ability to complete tasks within the desired time and avoid carrying them forward to another day hence ending up suffering from time deepening.
Emotions and Stress
An important section that the time diary considered was the levels of stress and emotions I experienced during different activities. Stress, according to Horowitz (1976), is a state of either emotional or mental strain. Emotion, on the other hand, is a feeling developed as a result of specific circumstances and can be either positive or negative. Generally, I was less stressed and had less negative emotions. However, while comparing the weekdays and the weekends, I can affirm that I am more stressed and had more negative emotions during the weekdays. I recorded being more stressed and having negative emotions during class hours and when I had engagements with the professor.
I had more positive emotions and extremely low levels of stress during my personal times like when I was eating, sleeping or taking a walk. In my leisure time, my stress levels were low, and I had positive emotions. As a result, I am made to concur that a person’s mind is at peace in their free time because then, one is not occupied with things that they do not like or things that strain them.
It is apparent that poor health is not only caused microbes or other organism but can emerge as a result of an unstable state of mind, which can easily be solved by taking time to relax and engage in leisure activities such as watching movies and playing online games. Based on this perception on health and the fact that most of my time is spent on leisure activities, I can boldly confirm that I have a good, healthy life, which also reflects in the emotions and stress section. Given the high percentage of my leisure activity, I do not think I need to increase or decrease my leisure activity engagement as it blends perfectly with my current health status.
The primary objective of this paper as pointed out, in the beginning, was to describe how I spend my time during weekdays and weekends and using the collected data to explain and reflect on my stress and emotion level as well as on my health. Luckily, this purpose is achieved because the paper has systematically been able to respond to all the objectives at length.
Horowitz, M. J. (1976). Stress response syndromes. Oxford, England: Jason Aronson.
Izard, C. E. (1991). The psychology of emotions. Springer Science & Business Media.
Millen, D. R. (2000, August). Rapid ethnography: time deepening strategies for HCI field research. In Proceedings of the 3rd conference on Designing interactive systems: processes, practices, methods, and techniques (pp. 280-286). ACM.
Perlow, L. A. (1999). The time famine: Toward a sociology of work time. Administrative science quarterly, 44(1), 57-81.