Ever felt that your to-do list keeps on adding new items every single hour? I have! Working in a fast paced industry can be very demanding and exhausting, which most of the time leaves so many employees overstretched and having to deal with a never-ending to do list.
But, that does not necessarily suggest that you are not qualified enough or not efficient enough. It could mean that the context is changing or that demand is rising so you need more resources and support.
There are some steps that you can do when you are in the never-ending to do list situation:
1. Do not multi-task
You might be surprised by this one. Multi-tasking can be considered a selling point, but when you start handling multiple projects / big tasks at the same time then it’s probably best to focus on one of them at a time. Multi-tasking can sometimes make you feel under-accomplished, especially if you keep juggling from one task to another without finishing them. When you focus on every task separately, you will be able to dedicate the required amount of time and effort for this task to deliver a better quality work, and then get the satisfaction of crossing things off your list.
2. Prioritize your tasks and make a plan
It would be very helpful if you categorize the things you have to do based on priority. Try to also estimate how much time it would take you to finish each task and what kind of support you need for each one. If you do this at the beginning of every day, it will help you determine how much you are capable of delivering, what you can definitely do, and what you should push back on. This type of planning will also enable to have a bigger grasp of your daily load and when you should say no to additional work.
3. Communicate with your manager
Lets’ face it. Sometimes, we have to work more than we’d like and it’s not exactly thrilling. However, don’t expect your boss to know you have reached your limit if you do not say anything. If your responsibilities are growing too fast and it’s affecting the quality of your work, do not hesitate to talk to your manager as he/she might be able to delegate to other team members and divide the work load. Don’t be afraid to also ask for support from your coworkers or subordinates.
4. Take some time to refresh
It is always a good solution to rewind when things get out of control. Try to dedicate some time every day to detach from everything related to your job. Meditate, go cycling, or walk home with your headphones on. Allow your body and mind to refresh. This will help you to think clearer, reduce your stress levels, and ultimately raise your energy level, which will reflect positively on your performance.
By Roba Al-Assi
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