For too many of us, feeling anxious and overwhelmed has become the new normal. But this may just be the time you finally get a handle on your to-do list and start working—and living—at your best.
Taking on too activities can have many negative consequences, both in your professional and home life:
- It can cause a high degree of stress and eventually lead you to “burn out”
- It can lead to neglect of your personal life, with planning and activities eating into time you’d spend with family and friends, relaxing, or exercising
- It can result in a failure to meet your core responsibilities because you’re too busy with lower priority tasks
Time-blocking and prioritization are two important keys to daily productivity. Look at your to-do list, figure out where you have blocks of time to act on those items, and then prioritize. Try to keep your defined “work” actions to 15 to 30 minutes each. These are the “chunks” of time where you can stay focused, minimize interruptions, and work effectively.
To help overcome a tendency to take on too much work, you should, also, know your core responsibilities and goals. Weigh the importance of assignments in relation to these responsibilities before agreeing to take them on.
You should also schedule your available time. Once you can see that your schedule is full, you’ll know not to accept further work.
However, it’s often difficult to say “no.” Find ways that help to buy time so that you can prepare an appropriate response without immediately taking on responsibility for a task. Also, try to ensure that if you refuse a request to take on more work to do so in a way that won’t cause offense and that doesn’t invite further discussion.
We would be glad to help you develop strategies to get control of and free up more of your time.
Watson Life Services . “Because Your Mind Matters”