Having too much work in progress can leave you feeling overtasked, which increases your odds of burnout. Plus, it makes tracking your duties harder, making mistakes far more likely. Fortunately, by embracing specific time management best practices, you can make your workload more manageable. Here are three time management tips to get you started.
1. Embrace Prioritization
In many cases, having too much work in progress is harder to deal with if you aren’t properly organized. By embracing prioritization, it’s easier to determine where you should focus your energy. In turn, creating a plan for handling your responsibilities is simpler.
Begin by listing your duties in order of urgency or importance. Next, estimate the time required to complete each activity and set achievable goals for your day based on that. By doing so, you give yourself realistic targets, creating a sense of direction.
Finally, make sure you single-task as you work. Multitasking often leaves you distracted and scattered instead of efficient and productive. Primarily, that’s because true multitasking isn’t something people can do. Instead, they simply transition rapidly between activities, and there’s a slight re-acclimation delay with every switch. By single-tasking, those unnecessary delays don’t occur, allowing you to work faster.
2. Create Balance
When you have a lot of work in progress, it often triggers an assumption that forgoing breaks and lunches is the best choice. In reality, stepping away from your tasks on occasion gives you a chance to recharge, and that’s critical for productivity. You’ll return to your work with renewed vigor and greater focus, leading to better outcomes.
Additionally, if you have a significant amount of work in progress, get comfortable with saying “no” when asked to take on more. Let the requester know that your workload doesn’t have space to accommodate more responsibilities. Then, work with them to determine if it’s wiser to transition one of your duties to someone else to make room for the new work or if the activity they presented is better sent to a colleague.
3. Use Planning Tools
Many simple planning tools make managing even a challenging workload easier. To-do lists give you simple guidelines regarding the order you’ll complete tasks. Plus, being able to cross an item off of the list can bring a sense of satisfaction, which often helps you stay motivated.
Your calendar is also a valuable tool. You can block out time for various duties and set reminders that let you know when it’s time to tackle a specific activity. Plus, on shared calendars, it lets others know that you’re busy. That could prevent distractions like colleagues stopping by for a non-work-related chat or limit unnecessary meeting invitations that pull you from your duties and don’t provide you with much value.
Ultimately, all of the time management tips above make handling a lot of work in progress easier. If you’d like to find out more or want to find a job that leaves you feeling challenged without being overtasked, TempStaff can help. Contact us today.
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