Coping with the pressures of work and home life can be difficult. Everyone wants more time in the day. here are 7 secrets that can help you find that extra time.
How can you find more time in your day to get everything done and still have time for a life outside work? Check out some of the tips below.
Create a to do list
If you’ve tried creating a to-do list before and it hasn’t worked for you, consider giving it another try with a new strategy, such as creating a list in Outlook or on your phone, using a paper calendar, or using a productivity app to help. By writing down your priorities for each day, you can help stay organised and most importantly remain realistic about what you can accomplish. Consider creating your list the night before work so that you can hit the ground running in the morning.
Limit multi-tasking
It’s a common misconception that multi-tasking will allow you to get things done faster. While certain tasks can be done at once, such as eating your lunch and watching a training video, but by and large you need to focus on the tasks at hand. If you can do one thing at a time, that will actually maximise your productivity in most situations. Multi-tasking can lead to stress while working to finish one thing at a time helps you stay in control; therefore helping you get everything done in one day.
Stick with Priorities
Many workers have a tendency to work in the order of “whatever is easiest” because then it seems like more got done. Well this may be a good time saver in some situations, putting off the inevitable will only stress you out, potentially causing those priorities to suffer in the future because you didn’t budget your time correctly. Get in the habit of going in an order and sticking with it and you’ll be surprised at how much more you’ll get done in the long run.
Create Your Own Schedule and Let Others Work Around You
This idea comes from being able to say “no” and/or feeling comfortable delegating work. Create a schedule of your priorities and be realistic about what you can get done in one day while still leaving time for other important things like exercise and sleep. Create a schedule for your day and make sure that people work around you as opposed to you bending for them. Of course in some situations compromise is necessary, but if you can always keep this idea in the back of your mind then you can make sure you’re not getting taken advantage of.
Break Your TV and Social Media Addictions
So we can’t assume that everyone deals with this, but in today’s fast-paced world these activities are starting to become an addiction and not a de-stressor. Whenever you have a block in your thought, you may turn to social media to “take a break,” when in reality you’re creating bad habits that are becoming a part of your routine. It takes 21 days to break a habit, so try and work hard to make it happen and eliminate these mindless activities. This will allow you to have control over your day and chose which projects and activities will be most beneficial without anything weighing you down. Note, if you need a break, one of the best things you can do is take a walk or spend a little time sitting quietly and not turning to a screen.
Put Organisation at Home as a Priority
If your life is organised everything you need to do at work will be organised. You may feel like you have a report due next week that simply doesn’t allow you the time to clean your car, but taking time to get something like your car in order can help you work more efficiently on your work because you’ll have less on your mind. Again, this is something that you’ll need to make a habit, but once you do you won’t be sorry.
Get a Good Nights Sleep Every Night
Prioritising sleep is one of the hardest things for workaholics, but it has to be taken seriously. Just like many of the other ideas on this list, this is one that will actually help all of your work get done better and faster than if you skipped sleep altogether, which also means you’ll get more done in the long run (and isn’t that really the point?). If you have so much work that you have to sacrifice sleep, you need to put your foot down and make a change either by talking to your boss or learning to better say “no,” as discussed above.
As you’ve probably noticed, most of the items listed above all deal with putting you back in control of your day so you can prioritise efficiently. Feeling like you’re in control will allow you to have a clear mind and not only make decisions easier and faster, but clearer. This allows you to get your priorities straight and hopefully the longer you start practicing these happens the sooner they will become routine.
Adapted from an article published in LearningLink April 2016, by Adam Heitzman