Don’t you wish sometimes every day came with more number of hours? That somehow, magically, you found yourself done with all your responsibilities and still have time left over? What you need is personal task management.
If you feel overworked and tired, and are always struggling to fulfil the demands of your work and home life, don’t worry; you’re not alone. Across the world, in every field and every industry, people are realising the paucity of the number of hours each day brings.
And yet, there are some people – ordinary folks and people with immense responsibilities – who seem to do just fine. They work, they play, they pursue hobbies, they volunteer, they travel, they relax – how do they manage it all? After all, they get the same number of hours as everyone else does.
They don’t work harder; rather, they work smarter. With a little practise, and these tips, you can be on your way to becoming a better and a happier you. Remember, you are not looking for just work-life balance, but work-life harmony.
#1. Plan a break
It’s very easy to get anxious looking at the work you have. Rather than getting bogged, schedule regular breaks.
This could mean a planned outing with your family and friends, or a regular hobby you don’t want to miss. It works as an incentive to finish the work you have planned for the day in time.
Whether it’s shopping for groceries, managing your dry-cleaning, or getting your car washed, outsourcing is one of the most effective time management techniques. Order groceries online, get your dry-cleaning dropped-off and picked up, and hire someone to wash the car. The time you’ll save will be worth the little extra you may need to spend.
Wake up half an hour earlier and go for a walk or a run. The me-time will help you think and plan for the day. A side benefit is the endorphins released that will make you happier.
#4. Start slow.
Even with a plan in place, don’t implement it full-swing right away. Give yourself time. Start small and don’t make big changes. Instead of deciding to leave every day at 5, begin by doing it one day a week and gradually make it regular.
#5. Learn to stop working
It might seem like odd advice, but you must learn to break away from work. Just as some people have trouble starting work, there are some who can’t stop. Read more.
Just one more hour, I’ll-do-this-after-dinner, let-me-check-my-mail-before-I-sleep… all these are bad habits that you need to stop feeding. If you know that you will work later, you are more likely to procrastinate during your actual working hours.
Have a firm cut-off time and wake up early to get everything done. An interesting way to work is to unplug the power cord to your laptop. That way you’re forced to finish before the power runs out.
#6. Rework that to-do list.
To-do lists, counted among the best personal productivity tools, can become counter-effective if you load them with too much.
Have three critical things to do. And get those done first. That way you will not sit back after hours to finish tasks that had to get done but didn’t, because of other non-critical work.
Also, make your list the previous night. This way you can hit the ground running. Here are a few ways to make the perfect to-do list.
Lastly, remember that it’s not possible to accomplish everything. Don’t be hard on yourself and allow for some leeway.