How often have you not replied to an email and when you finally came back to it, you ended up writing far more than you would have done, had you simply replied right away? This used to happen to me…
If you find yourself with an ever-lengthening ‘to do’ list and a sense of being so overwhelmed, that it paralyzes you from getting started on tasks, you are not alone. Many people share that sense of overwhelm. Our expectation of what we need to get done at work, at home, and with family or friends is high and increasing. Here are some simple tips to deal with it.
Look at the list and decide on the top three things that need to get done or started. Do only those. If you get them done, be prepared to call it a day. Or at least reward yourself before you start on something else.
Next, schedule the most important tasks on your calendar, like appointments. Treat them as if they were important meetings. If you have to move them, actually move them to another date and time. Reschedule with yourself.
Now block out 30 or 60 minute chunks of time on your calendar for ‘admin’, personal or professional. That’s when you look at the rest of that ‘to do’ list and start hammering through it. Do as much as you can, as fast as you can, in the allowed time. When the time is up, stop. This way you’ll knock out those tasks that can eat away the whole day, while important project sit untouched and growing in magnitude in your head, creating stress.
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