Where Did My Day Go?
I knew I spent lots of time going to medical appointments. All I had to do was ask the question, “Where did the day go?” However, this year I decided to maintain a monthly medical time log and record the exact hours.
Medical Appointments Time Log
My medical log includes time for driving to the professional’s office, checking in, paperwork, waiting, consulting with the professional, checking out, and driving home.
Time is recorded for refilling prescriptions, calling doctor for new prescription, making appointments, going to pharmacy, and dealing with mail order meds. Once I have the pills in hand, I note the time required for counting, cutting, and organizing pills in a day-of-the-week dispenser.
The log also includes the time for deciding what to wear and getting dressed. These steps are included because it takes extra time to think about whom I am seeing and what is appropriate for the neurology office versus the massage therapist’s office. An outside appointment requires more “getting ready” time than working in my home office all day (where you are apt to see me in fashionable pajama wear!)
Thinking about and deciding on the timing of my meds are also included. Although I generally take my pills at approximately the same time each day, I do allow for some flexibility to insure I am properly medicated when I go public. A 15 to 30 minute change in either direction can make a huge difference between being on with my meds or off (meaning I will move very slowly). So I think about various scenarios. If I take this pill at 7 a.m., I need the next dose no later than 11 a.m. But the appointment is not until 10:30. I better take the pill no earlier than 7:30 a.m. or 8:00 a.m.
In January, I spent a total of 21.25 hours on medical appointments and related medical activities and decisions. I saw three different doctors, had four doctors’ appointments, had five medical tests/screenings, and had four massage therapy appointments.
My medical time log does not include exercise, support group meeting, tai chi class, blogging, research, interacting with readers, Facebook postings, or teachable moments. What about eating, sleeping, shopping, and socializing?
Three decades ago I taught time management seminars and encouraged students to keep a 24-hour time log for a couple of weeks. Many were often shocked to analyze the results. I may need to revisit that tool!