Why do some people get overwhelmed at work?
Nowadays, with all these tasks and deadlines, there are employees who find it hard to disconnect from work and set boundaries. Although they feel overwhelmed, they find it hard to close the laptop for the day. As a consequence, they work more than they should and this can lead to fatigue or even burnout because if they stop they will think to themselves that they can’t keep up the pace.
Some useful tips on time management:
1) Perhaps the simplest, although most useful tip, is creating a time budget. Consider how much time it takes for each task and see the total amount of time spent doing it each week so you can better organize yourself. You can also try this:
Hours/Day to Work=24-(Number of Hours of Sleep)-(Commute)- (Personal Commitments)-(Exercise)-(Self Care)
2) Another tip would be analyzing which tasks could take less time or sharing them with colleagues in order to reduce your workload. Next, compare your plan with the real-life situation. You could use different apps to help keep track of the time. Also, skipping or spending less time on certain activities that prevent you from working can also help.
3) Talking to your manager and people who might try to put more work on your shoulders is important. Present them your situation using a visual to help get a better idea of your schedule and use a shortlist that shows how much a task should take so as to know how it impacts your schedule and make you work overtime.
4) Set a time limit for your tasks. This helps you concentrate, helps you avoid being distracted by other factors, gives you a sense of progress, predictability and control, and makes sure that, upon completion, you can move on to the next task at hand.
5) Use an online calendar. Being able to quickly check and modify your schedule on any device makes it easier for you to have an overview of what you have to do in any given day and it also appropriately determines how to think about and allocate the required time.
6) Just say “no”. Although you don’t want to upset anyone, setting up boundaries is the best thing to do for both yourself and others as it makes sure that you have enough time to work on what is already on your plate and get proper rest. Not being able to say “no” will get you overworked and tired, less efficient in both your work and on those extra projects you reluctantly accepted. Not to mention the impact it will have on your personal life.
7) Do less. Oftentimes trading quantity for quality is exactly what is needed to be done in order to achieve more and advance in your career. By doing less you can add much more value to what you have already undertaken and it allows you to clear up time for other endeavors.
Let’s wrap it up:
It takes time to manage your day-to-day activities to avoid being overloaded. It’s important you let others see how this impacts you and let them help you. Also, imposing limits is beneficial in the long term. It’s hard at first to keep a proper balance, but this comes with practice.