“Claim back time for the things that really matter”: A qualitative examination of tracking leisure time and technology use in a reflective time journal
Anna Navin Young, Sarah Foley and Zelda Di Blasi
Citation: Young, A. N., Foley, S., & Di Blasi, Z. (2023). “Claim back time for the things that really matter”: A qualitative examination of tracking leisure time and technology use in a reflective time journal. European Journal of Applied Positive Psychology, 7, 2, 1-17. https://www.nationalwellbeingservice.org/volumes/volume-7-2023/volume-7-article-2/
Processing dates: Submitted 2 March 2022; Resubmitted 15 September 2022; Accepted 12 October 2022; Published 15 March 2023
Background: Though conceptualized in different ways, time, namely how it is used and experienced, has implications for health and wellbeing. Thus, time-related interventions may offer new ways to support human flourishing. This qualitative study introduces and evaluates a reflective time journaling technique in relation to leisure time and wellbeing.
Methods: Eight participants took part in the intervention study. First, they explored their experiences of leisure time and the role of technology in this time through a semi-structured interview. Participants then engaged with a week-long time journaling exercise to track their leisure time and any reflections that arose through the process. Finally, in a follow up interview, participants reflected on their experiences keeping the time journal and any insights and behavior changes that were prompted by the experience.
Results: Inductive reflexive thematic analysis was used to construct four themes: 1) multi-faceted factors of leisure experiences, 2) technology and quality of leisure, 3) awareness of time through tracking, and 4) meaningful leisure time.
Discussion/Conclusion: The results are discussed with focus given to the time journal design. Implications for future research and application within the fields of coaching and positive
psychology are explored with specific implications for supporting people through disruptive times, including the recent COVID-19 pandemic.
Keywords: Reflective time journal, qualitative research, positive psychology, time awareness, leisure time, technology