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I Know How She Does It

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I Know How She Does It

How Successful Women Make the Most of Their Time


15 min read
8 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Laura Vanderkam explores the art of “having it all” – how top-earning women juggle family, careers and personal time.

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  • Applicable
  • Well Structured
  • Concrete Examples


Juggling the competing demands of motherhood, a personal life and a career can sometimes seem impossible. But attention to detail, maximizing the time you do have and conscious time management allows you to meet more of your goals. As part of her ongoing study, the Mosaic Project, Laura Vanderkam analyzed 1,001 daily time logs of mothers earning six-figure salaries. Her clear, compelling narrative breaks down misconceptions about how the most successful women use their time. She shows you how to put in a full workweek and still find time for your family and leisure activities. Vanderkam uses hard data to empower working mothers – from new moms holding part-time jobs to successful CEOs wishing for more hours in the day – to take control of their time, their lives and their health.


You can schedule more meaningful activities if you manage your time carefully. 

For ambitious professional women, the key to living “the good life” lies in properly managing time. Regardless of who you are or what you do, each week of your life contains 168 hours. While most women inevitably spend many of these hours working and sleeping, even those who work overtime can still arrange their schedules to enjoy happy, balanced lives.

For example, a woman who works 50 hours a week and sleeps eight hours per night has 62 hours available to fill at her discretion. Even if you work 60 hours a week, you still have 52 hours when you can schedule other activities. Picture the hours you fill each week as tiles in a mosaic. By filling in these tiles as creatively as you see fit, you can build the life that you want, piece by piece.

A study of high-achieving women with familial obligations found that many participants had ample time for themselves, their social lives and their families.

People assume that top-earning professional women must make huge sacrifices in their personal and family lives to maintain their careers. Often, that’s simply not the case. When...

About the Author

Laura Vanderkam is a best-selling author of What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast; 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think; and All the Money in the World: What the Happiest People Know About Wealth. She writes for Fast Company’s website.

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