The blog will be back next week. Where in your life do you need a brief sabbatical?
Every month, I have a task that I want to get done, but don’t enjoy doing. I prepare a statistical and financial report on a project for which there are ongoing sales and other people involved. The others involved are very understanding and never nag me for the information, but they do appreciate that it is being kept up with.
One day, toward the end of my work day, that task remained on my list and I decided to defer it to the next week. So I changed the due date and closed up shop for the day. The next morning, when I had limited time, I decided to see how long it would take to actually do the task and get the report out.
I timed it.
I was in for a pleasant surprise.
That dreaded task? It only took about 10 minutes, if that. I simply had to focus, transfer the numbers, prepare the email and send it out.
Now that I realize how little time it actually takes, I hope I be less likely to dread it popping up on my monthly recurring tasks.
This gets me to thinking that there are several other work tasks that really don’t take that long and can be knocked out in the time it takes to gear up to do them or complain about them. Things like:
5 Minute Tasks: cleaning out one file, cleaning off my desktop, deleting or moving a few electronic files, cleaning up/deleting emails I don’t really need, doing a quick review of my calendar for the next week
10 Minute Tasks: returning a couple of phone calls or emails that take just a few sentences; doing a more detailed review of my calendar, researching a product, cleaning out a desk drawer
15 Minute Tasks: conducting a call with a client, reading a chapter of a professional development book, taking a walk, cleaning out a good number of emails.
Next time you are facing a task you dread, tame it. Here are a few tips to help you get past it.
Sometimes our mind makes things harder then they are. Be realistic about the time a task will take. In some cases, you may be surprised that it won’t take as long as you think! Time it and tame it for less stress!
OPP: You are already busy, and you’ve been asked to organize/host an event for clients/customers.
Several months ago, I was invited to an event hosted by Greenville Office Supply. They were having a lunch and learn opportunity at their office/warehouse and invited their customers to come by and enjoy a free lunch, tour, and other fun.
I had developed a relationship with this company while I was filling a part-time office administration position for a full service marketing firm. I was impressed with how they treated us and the event only added to that positive impression.
What also appealed to me was the relative simplicity of the event, which (I hope!) made it easier on their employees to host, yet made the guests feel well cared for. So here are some tips for hosting an engaging event without getting overwhelmed!
I don’t know how stressed any of the GOS staff were for this event–maybe they were, but if so, I didn’t sense any major “hurry-scurry” atmosphere, which is what you want when hosting an event. I truly enjoyed the event and my connection with them. Now go plan a great event for your clients and customers–without getting stressed out!
Your turn: What event do you have coming up? What tip would you offer?
Looks like the video didn’t come through easily in last week’s email so here’s another attempt. If you still can’t see it, go here to view it.
One of the most critical times in your day is a “transition time.” These can occur several times a day, and need to be managed well to avoid stress. (I’m still working on it!)
Here’s a video with more.
We all need a bit of cushion–or “white space” in our lives throughout the day. This gives margin in case an appointment runs late, or a task takes longer than you expect. When planning your day, always assume you have to add a cushion to commutes and meetings. This will help relieve your stress, or even simply give you time to go to the rest room!
Feeling overwhelmed regularly? You may be suffering from OPS – Overwhelmed Professional Syndrome. But there’s hope! (See what I did there?)
First, consider the following symptoms and answer “yes” or “no” to each:
As you read through those symptoms, did you answer “yes” to any of them? I can.
So what do we do about it?
Moving from overwhelmed professional to one that excels in each of our life roles is not an overnight process. In fact, we may gain ground in one area and fall back in another. At the risk of using a cliche word, it’s a journey.
I’m an overwhelmed professional from time to time. That’s why I write and work to help other overwhelmed professionals. Most of us have a good heart, solid intentions, and innate professional skill. We just need to understand that we can’t be perfect nor do it all, and rein in our drive from time to time. So I hope you’ll stick with me and read every Monday, interact on various social media channels, and purchase resources that will help!
Today I’m introducing Hope, another overwhelmed professional. She and her buddies–Henry (her dog) and RC-various “random colleagues” – will appear from time to time in the blog, sharing in our collective journey to excel despite being sometimes overwhelmed.
Hope may or may not be somewhat based on someone you know. I’ll never tell.
Here’s to a year of excelling!