Have you noticed that many people are more overloaded and overwhelmed today than they were five years ago? In this YouTube clip, I reveal several factors that may be contributing to this sense of overwhelm.
Overwhelm may also be intrinsic. Some admit to being self-proclaimed workaholics; to feeling exhausted and burnt-out.
We live in an era that worships a treadmill way of life in the workplace. Professionals who aspire to climb the corporate ladder typically feel compelled to jump on the workaholic bandwagon. While it may start out rather innocently, those who engage in such craziness soon find themselves sucked into a big hole, paying a very big price.
You can incorporate certain choices and strategies into every work day right where you are. Here are five tips to help you release stress and reduce overwhelm.
1. Start the work day by getting yourself grounded.
Determine what you need to do to quiet your body, mind, and spirit. Develop a little ritual that may, in total, take twenty minutes. Engage in yoga, meditation, prayer. Eat a healthful breakfast. Read a meaningful passage from a book. Exercise. Empty your head.
2. Be clear about your priorities.
While you may think you have fifty priorities before you collapse tonight, you actually have five or less. Identify them before you get out of bed each morning. To do this you have to get real with yourself. Cut to the chase. What three or five things absolutely have to happen today? What are the consequences if they don’t? Organize your day around those carefully chosen priorities.
3. Reduce your “open door policy” time.
If you are supervising staff and feel you need to be accessible to them all day long, revise your thinking on this one. While you do need to be available as a resource, you can set boundaries around it. Decide to close your door tightly for half an hour each day, and let employees know that, unless there’s an emergency, you don’t want to be interrupted during that time.
4. Limit the number of interruptions.
Although this is not always possible, it is more possible than you may imagine. Schedule brief intervals throughout the day when people may interrupt you to get their needs met. Publicize those times. As a result of “planning” your interruptions, you will get more work done more effectively.
5. Delegate tasks other people can handle.
Our egos tell us we have to do everything ourselves. That is simply not true. Learn to identify what you absolutely must take care of yourself, and look for opportunities to delegate the rest of it to others who are capable of handling it. Make a list of everything currently on your plate, then mark the tasks that staff or peers can easily do.
Consider how YOU can reduce overwhelm and take action today!