Time is intangible. You can’t see, smell, taste, hear, or feel it. So, it’s hard to pin down. Probably one of the reasons clocks were invented.

Timers can be a great help for keeping track of our time. Decide you’re going to work for an hour, set the timer, and you don’t have to think about time again until it goes off. Smart.

Clocks are not nearly as helpful, but if you check them often enough and pay attention, you may learn to “feel” how much time has passed and be able to guess pretty accurately what time it is. (I can actually do this, probably because I used to be very time conscious about everything, so I know it’s possible).

But I recommend using a timer. The benefits are many.

Here’s one example. You need to tackle a job that can take hours that you hate (cleaning out the kitchen cabinets and scrubbing them down, cleaning out a closet, or the garage, for example). Tell yourself you’ll work on it for fifteen minutes every day until the whole job is done. Every day at a set time, get ready, set your timer for fifteen minutes, and begin. You can stop at fifteen minutes, or if you feel like it, continue for a while. But don’t push yourself or you won’t want to put in your fifteen minutes the next day. You can always stop at fifteen minutes. Because tomorrow you going to do it for fifteen minutes again, and you know it will eventually be all done.

Or perhaps you want to do a big project, and you really like doing it, but you keep procrastinating. Again, set a time of day to start, put your timer on one hour, and go. At one hour, do stop. If you’ve been sitting, get up. Stretch. Do a small chore, grab something to eat, freshen up, make a phone call (standing). If you’ve been on your feet the whole time, sit down with a snack, file your nails, make a phone call—anything that takes about ten minutes Then you can call it a day, or go for another hour, then take another break. And so on.

You can use the same method to get a lot of small jobs done all at once. Set the timer for half an hour or an hour, and work on that list until the time is up. Tomorrow’s another day.

Hope this is helpful.