You find yourself working late… even when deadlines aren’t demanding it.
Family and friends repeatedly tell you they miss talking with you.
You’re frazzled, overwhelmed and can’t catch up.
Do these statements ring true for you? If so, you’ve likely crossed the line into a world of stress. Being a dedicated worker is great. Being totally consumed by work is not. Everything suffers, including the career you’re working at so diligently.
You’ve heard it a million times, but it’s true. Work smarter, not harder. Harder gets you nowhere. Smarter gets you the life you’ve always wanted.
Begin with these key strategies:
Make time to plan
Don’t fool yourself by thinking you don’t have time to plan. You can’t afford not to. And, while you’re at it, be sure to schedule time for yourself – to relax and rejuvenate, as well as time to enjoy family and friends. Be intentional about the things that are most important. See time for yourself as equal to anyone else’s demand on your time. For example, if someone is asking for your assistance and it will take away from your time to plan, say no. Of course, if it’s your boss, or an emergency, you can reschedule your planning time. But, when you do, you must keep the commitment to the new time slot.
Use your resources
Rely on the talents and expertise of those around you. This applies to both your professional and personal life. Reach out and collaborate with those who can help you get the job done. Often we don’t reach out because we feel like we are imposing on others. But think of it like this–if you ask for help, it gives other people permission to do the same when they are in need.
Manage and maximize technology
The sheer number of apps for helping us manage life can seem unmanageable. Instead of having several apps that serve the same function, choose a few that best meet your needs. For example, use one calendar, one news source, one notes app. Trying to manage multiple tools with similar functions can create more frustration and eat away your time.
As you implement these steps, you’ll probably begin to get a better handle on your stress. If you find that you are having a tough time creating change, seek out the help of a therapist or counselor.