According to the study, the main reason why we get stressed is not that we have “too much to do”. For most of us, having too much to do is perfectly fine as long as we know what our priorities are and if we can have a good overview of work. Instead, the plague of modern career life is that we have too many things to do and that we loose track of it all.
Here’s an easy and effective manner of dealing with your workload. These easy techniques we’re proven time and time again.
1. Write it down.
I never cease to be amazed by how often stressed out people try to keep all the things they have to do in their heads. Stress is often more about knowing that we have a lot to do but not being able to recollect precisely what. Have yourself a notebook or a journal, and a pen – and use it :). Or you can install “mindmap” on your computer. It’s easy to use. There are video tutorials on youtube, and it’s free.
2. Write it ALL down.
In order for you to have a to-do list that you can rely on, you must trust that it contains ALL the things you have to do. Otherwise, you will still have a nagging feeling that you may not be focussing on the right things.
3. Channel interruptions in your to-do listing.
Interruptions are part of life so don’t let them stress you. It could be very quick so that you can deal with them straight away or something that you can defer to a time when you decide.
4. Don’t let your email inbox become your to-do list.
Email focuses you into a “busy-work” mode and not really in prioritizing “whats the most important things to be” done.
5. You don’t have to do everything all at once!
If I had to choose one single reason why people fail with their to-do lists it would have to be that they lack the ability to strike things off it. Things change, depending on the situation you’re in, and so should your to-do list.
6. Let’s face it, a few tasks are huge, vague and perhaps boring.
We end up postponing these tasks forever and as a result they never leave our to-do list. Eventually, our to-do list is full of these varieties of tasks and then we got overwhelmed so we decide not to take a look at the depressing list. The trick is, break the task down into smaller components. Then take that first step.
7. Not my time of day
Listen for your personal rhythm. Let’s face it. Were human, not machines. At times we are efficient and sometimes we’re not. I see it as a surfer who times the waves after which rides them to their fullest. Discover yourself a way that let’s you monitor your very own “waves”.
8. Don’t be a kill-joy!
Make your work enjoyable. Dressed-up and looking so professional doesn’t make you a boss that everyone wants to work with when you are so boring. Set small goals and reward yourself.
It works with me, I hope it helps you too. In essence, the simple secret lies in taking charge of your time. See you in my next posts.