I recently stumbled on Windows 10.5.6. Nothing to do with an operating system for your computer, but rather a philosophical operating system for your life.
Every Week You Get 21 Windows of Opportunity
The basic concept is that there are 10+5+6 productive 'slots' or 'windows of opportunity every week.
It’s a concept within which to think about how you’re investing your time, and it’s a useful framework. 21 ‘windows’ a week with 10 (typically) focused on work and 11 for personal activities. To understand a little more, here is some basic arithmetic.
Assuming a working life of 47 years (18 through 65), with four weeks of vacation a year and another week a year for ‘other’ things (training, illness, travel). This means that over your career you’ll have:
Windows of Opportunity are Constantly Eroding
At first glance this seems pretty good, especially in terms of work/life balance. There are a lot of windows within a working lifetime. Better still, more than half of them are personal. The average twenty-year old sees this long bright future stretching out ahead of them with a seemingly limitless reservoir to tap into. At twenty, that’s true. But at thirty, the windows of opportunity are declining rapidly.
Time is not an infinite resource. So using a ‘window’ to watch a bad movie, or play a game on your phone, or sit in a pointless business meeting is really a waste of time. It becomes especially apparent if you start adding these wasted windows up. For example, imagine that you attend just one worthless (3hr) meeting a month. That will soak up 564 windows over a career, 2.5%.
Bottom line - life is VERY finite. You (probably) only get one try, so make it count! Think about the 10.5.6 windows that are open to you every week, and use them wisely – they’re precious.