How to Track Time the Elon Musk Way


Written by Asim Qureshi
By Asim Qureshi, CEO Jibble

Hi, I’m Asim Qureshi, the CEO and co-founder of Jibble, a cloud-based time and attendance software. I have several years of experience in building and scaling software products and teams across various industries and markets. Before I founded Jibble, I worked as a VP at Morgan Stanley for six years. I’m passionate about helping businesses improve their productivity and performance through smart time management practices.

Elon Musk once said, “It’s possible for ordinary people to choose to be extraordinary.”

He wasn’t wrong.

But going from ordinary to extraordinary doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a series of steps, consistent work, and most importantly, effective time management.

I’ve had a look at how Elon manages to juggle being the CEO of SpaceX, CEO of Tesla, and CTO of X, while co-founding Neuralink and OpenAI in between (all billion-dollar companies by the way), and still have time to post some hilarious memes. Here’s what I found:

All great leaders realize that time is scarce.

We each only have around 4,000 weeks in our lives. That’s not a whole lot.

It feels even shorter when you look at it from a daily perspective.

The moment you start seeing time as a scarce resource the more you’re going to value it and the more intentional you’ll become about how you use it.


You can’t control time.

It’s a common mistake to think that we can take full control of our time. That maybe if we can just optimize our schedules enough, we can manipulate time to our advantage. But that’s just not the case.

You can keep planning every single minute of your day but you still won’t be able to stretch it to fit an entire week’s worth of tasks.

I’m all for optimizing your schedule but don’t fall into the trap of over optimization. You might end up wasting your time planning and thinking about how you can perfectly optimize every single minute that you forget to live. 


Time management starts with self-awareness.

Where does your time go? What are your activities throughout the day? How much time do you spend on each one?

You can’t manage what you can’t measure.

Start by gaining self-awareness of your time utilization through a simple yet powerful exercise: time tracking.

Track your time for the entire day. Write down your activities every hour and rate how they made you feel on a scale of 1 to 10. 

This is a simple exercise but you might be surprised to discover how much time you’re dedicating to things that don’t truly bring you satisfaction.

Remember, knowledge is power. By understanding your time habits, you can make informed decisions about how to prioritize and allocate your precious hours more effectively.


Set up a game plan.

Now it’s time to turn the data you’ve collected into actionable insights. Look at your time tracking data and analyze how your day went.

  • Which activities gave you the most satisfaction?
  • Where does most of your time go?
  • What distractions stood in the way of finishing your tasks?

Based on your answers, prioritize your daily activities. Create a hierarchy as to which ones bring you the most joy and can edge you closer to your goals.

Break down your day into smaller blocks.

Elon Musk is pretty famous for his time blocking method which others regard as the ultimate productivity hack.

And while Elon’s 5-minute time blocks may not be for everyone, the general technique of segmenting your day into manageable chunks has been proven to maximize focus. 

Whether it’s dedicating an hour to brainstorming ideas, tackling emails in 30-minute intervals, or setting aside time for deep work, adopting a structured approach to time management can enhance efficiency and ultimately help you get more things done.

Multi-tasking is a myth.

Research shows that when our brain frequently shifts focus between tasks, especially when those tasks are complex and demand active attention – we become less efficient and are even more likely to make a mistake.

It’s almost certain: you will always get better results when you focus on one thing at a time. 


Choose where you can thrive, delegate the rest.

Striving for excellence in everything leads to excellence in nothing. Especially if you’re running a business, you can’t take on everything yourself.

Elon knows he can’t do it all alone (even though he probably wishes he could). That’s why he’s a pro at delegating tasks to his team.

Don’t be afraid to delegate. Choose key areas where you can bring the most value and let go of the rest.


Stay in sync with your goals and timelines.

Be sure to synchronize your goals, important dates, and deadlines into a digital calendar.

Many businesses including Tesla, use Jibble to keep track of their time and sync their schedules. Using time tracking tools like this can make a tremendous difference in how effectively you can manage your time.

Technology is your friend and automations are your superpower.

Some people end up losing opportunities because they’re too afraid of innovation. Don’t be one of them.

Automate and delegate repetitive tasks wherever you can. This might involve:

  • Automating bill payments
  • Employing a cleaning service for your home
  • Utilizing an AI assistant
  • Using a time tracking app

Each task you outsource frees up time for more important endeavors. Focus on working intelligently, not just diligently.

Stop stealing time from your future self.

A huge percentage of people are procrastinators, don’t be one of them. Resist the urge to procrastinate and prioritize actions that can benefit your future self.

If you can do it today, why put it off until tomorrow? Tomorrow might be too late.


Make time for downtime.

Remember, downtime isn’t just a treat after being productive—it’s essential for maintaining productivity.

Try not to tie your value to productivity. You’re human, not a machine. Make self-care a priority to avoid burnout and keep your creativity going.

View rest as a vital need, not an indulgence:

Your hours are only as good as the energy you invest in them.

Productivity flows when your well-being is nurtured so make sure to manage not just your time but also your energy. Some small steps you can take in that direction could include:

  • Making sleep and exercise a priority
  • Taking regular breaks to recharge
  • Paying attention to your natural rhythms and plan your tasks accordingly

“Busy” and “Productive” are two different things.

People often equate busyness with productivity. After all, a packed schedule can make us feel like we’re accomplishing a lot. However, true productivity isn’t measured by how busy we appear, but rather by the tangible results we achieve. It’s about the quality of our output, not the quantity of hours we put in.

Shift your focus from optics to actual results.

Don’t underestimate the power of routines.

What are your daily routines?

Routines provide structure, stability, and a sense of control in an otherwise chaotic world. They help us manage our time more effectively, reduce decision fatigue, and increase productivity.

Routine building is a long-term task but you can start small.

  • Start your day with a morning routine to set intentions.
  • Take time to reflect on your week
  • Wind down with an evening routine for peaceful rest.

“You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems.” – James Clear.


Guard your time.

Constant accessibility invites perpetual distractions. The most effective time managers:

  • Establish boundaries with others
  • Dedicate focused work periods as sacred time
  • Embrace JOMO (the Joy Of Missing Out)

Guard your time as you would any valuable asset and don’t be afraid to say “NO”. Preserve your time and energy for things that truly matter.


Don’t be too fixated on perfection.

Perfectionism can stand in the way of completion.

Prioritize progress over perfection. Taking imperfect action is better than waiting for the perfect moment.

Begin with small steps, embrace the messiness, but take that first step forward. As Nike would say: “Just do it!”

Time management is ultimately life management.

It’s not about packing more into every day.

It’s about purposefully using the time you have.

When you achieve this, you’ll discover that life becomes richer and more meaningful in its own right.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, what matters most is where you choose to spend your time. Your time is your most valuable asset. Make sure to structure it around the things that give your life more value.

Protect it fiercely. Invest it wisely—because it’s the one resource you can’t increase. Once it’s gone, it’s gone forever.