Time is the limiting factor for all of us. When I get overwhelmed with work, something has to give. If not, life will get very frustrating. When we add new projects or responsibilities in our life, we have to eliminate old ones. If we don’t, the time allocated to each task shrinks. Ultimately, we become less and less productive.
Deciding what to give up can be trying. All of your tasks are important, right? Here are some things to consider.
1. Delegate to another person. This option has many benefits in the work environment. You can pass on your knowledge and skills, as you develop your team, an employee, a peer, or someone you contract.
2. Find the appropriate substitute. Sometimes matches are easy. For example, spend more time exercising and less time eating, or spend more time reading and less time watching video. Matching what you drop and add can make the transition easier.
3. Avoid giving up relaxation for work time. It is tempting to think you are just going to work harder to get everything done. It may help for a short time, but it won’t work long term. We all need time to recharge. If you decide to reduce your recreation time, also improve the quality of your recreation time. For example, substitute watching television with something you enjoy more. Spend more time with your family, or more time meeting friends. Go to the theater, learn to cook a new recipe, or visit the gym. Develop a habit of making the most of your recreation time, the same as you strive to make your work time more productive.
When I think back over the last five years, I could have been more proactive in the way I chose to spend my time. We can choose what we drop, and choose what we add. If we don’t someone else will choose for us.