Let’s face it, when you’re busy, it seems like your to-do list is never-ending. How will you manage to get through a 2-hour meeting while also needing to meet a deadline by 2PM the same day? The answer is balance.
It isn’t an easy thing to master either. It actually takes practice, however once you’ve taken these first initial 6 steps, you’ll be a pro!
1. Make A Day to Day Schedule on Your Phone’s Calendar App
Yes, your iPhone is much more useful than just checking Instagram and Facebook. Click into your phone’s calendar app and start jotting down the things you need to get done in the day. Set times and alerts for at least an hour before you need to get the task done. This will help you start a habit of checking your calendar every day to see what your day really looks like before you agree to go for that long coffee break to Starbucks.
2. The Early Bird Gets The Worm
And they’re able to get a lot done in a day too! My mother used to always say this mantra to me for literally whatever I did. Literally. Later I found out it was definitely for great reason. Starting your day bright and early stretches your day, thus you being able to get more done. You just have to stick to a reasonable bedtime, and you’ll be gold.
3. Utilize Your Alarm Clock For Tasks
Setting an alarm to your tasks is important. Especially if you’re working with an immediate deadline. Make sure to set your alarm to a pleasant sound though, no one wants to be suddenly tensed up when a fire alarm belts out from your purse.
4. Always Take A Complete Hour For Lunch, Away From Your Desk
This will not only replenish your energy but also give you chance to hit the reset button. If we eat at our desks, we will never fully disengage from our work. Make it a priority to take your full lunch break, no matter how much you have to do or what others may think.
5. Test Out Work Start Times
Some companies allow this, so if possible, see what your options are for start times. If you feel like you’re an early bird and can get more done in the AM, ask your supervisor if a 6-3PM shift is available. I’ve personally seen a lot of companies actually push for staggered start times with their employees as it offsets break times and tasks.
6. Be 10 Steps Ahead of Everything
Be the professional that turns in work early. Like my mother’s mantra “the early bird gets the worm”, it goes hand in hand with reliability and efficiency. As a freelancer, I always turn in assignments early and answer emails promptly because you never know what new opportunities they might have sitting waiting for you!
Offset your schedule by a day. If you’re set to complete a task on a certain day, make it a personal goal to get it done a day before. Now you’re ahead of the curve, not behind!