Have you ever made your to-do list at the beginning of the workday and shuddered at how long it was? And then suffered from incredible pressure throughout the day to get every task completed? And then glanced in horror at the measly three things you actually crossed off before you left to go home?
The hamster wheel is brutal. According to The American Institute of Stress, 46% of work related stress directly correlates to the workload that person is carrying. Is it really worth all of that anxiety?
It’s time to have a fresh start—with a new perspective—on how you deal with your scrambled to do list. And really, it isn’t about lists at all. Or check boxes. Or cute little color Post-It® Notes adorning your computer screen.
It’s all about time. Either you tell time what to do, or you let it push you around. And around here, we don’t let anyone push us around.
Are you ready to take control?
Because it’s time to learn how to manage your time like the BOSS you are.
Make ONE List
Instead of keeping 67 lists on little tiny sticky notes, napkins, and on ratty envelopes in your car, we suggest you pile EVERY thing you have to do onto ONE list.
Tell Your Time What to DO
Step 1: Scan your list and put a star next to the items that are the most urgent. Now, circle the star on the ones that you have to get done TODAY.
Step 2: Grab your day planner (or your Outlook calendar). Go through each TODAY task and block out the exact time you’ll need to complete each one. Once it’s booked in your calendar, cross it off the list. If it’s a recurring item that happens every day, keep it on the list. Also, block out a small chunk for unexpected things that might pop up.
Step 3: Once today is taken care of, book your time for tomorrow starting with the next most urgent task. Then, do the same thing for the following day. Eventually, your to-do list will be all crossed off. And once you’re done partying, here’s what you can do next:
Step 4: Print out a copy of your time blocks (if it’s electronic) each day, and cross off each item as you complete it.
Manage the Surprises
When a project emergency arises, don’t panic. Look through your day and figure out if you can re-prioritize to create time for the surprise. If you absolutely cannot budge, look at tomorrow. Continue this process until you have found a reasonable time slot to complete the task.
You Made It!
How amazing will it feel to cross off EVERY thing on your to do list EVERY day? You, my friend, are about to find out. There isn’t anything more rewarding than working within your limits. No more squeezing a million things in at the end of your day (just-one-more-thing syndrome) and leaving to go home at 9:00pm. You can reclaim your life—and your sanity—all by doing a little proactive surgery on your workload. And we think that’s pretty fantastic.
Questions or comments? Leave them below—let’s get the conversation started!