You don’t have to do it all to be productive. In fact, one of the keys to productivity is reducing the number of tasks you do. It’s hard to accomplish your goals when you feel pushed to the limit. By taking a step back, you can re-evaluate your priorities and be efficient where it counts. Let’s take a closer look at how doing less will make you more productive.
A Busy Schedule Is Distracting
It’s hard to focus on the task at hand when you know you have a whole list for the day. You may not be actively thinking about those tasks, but they are in the back of your mind. This pulls focus from what your trying to accomplish, which leads to poor results or extended timeframes. By simplifying your schedule and your life as a whole, you can be more productive in the moment.
Doing Less Reduces Stress
When you feel pressured to get a lot accomplished, you are more likely to make simple mistakes. Think back to a big paper you had to write in college or an important project at work. Did you make errors that could have been avoided? Having several tasks to do at once is inherently stressful, and that pressure makes you less productive.
Quality vs. Quantity
In this age-old battle, quality always wins. It is better to have three outstanding outcomes than a dozen mediocre ones. Rather than trying to be everything for everybody, focus on what you do best. You can approach the day with more confidence and ultimately get more done.
Learning How to Say No
In order to “do less,” you need to start saying no. This can be a challenge if you’re used to taking on every challenge that comes your way. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Define your priorities. What are the tasks that you cannot get rid of, under any circumstances? When you know what matters most to you, it is easy to narrow down your other commitments.
- Finish old projects before starting new ones. Before you agree to another commitment, think about the ones you already have. Cross a few of those off your list so you have more time and energy for new experiences.
- Be realistic about your time and energy. You can’t be everywhere at once. Have you started sacrificing sleep for your never-ending list? Do you feel like you don’t get anything accomplished because there are always 10 other things to do? Agree to tasks that fit your time and energy levels – nothing more.
- Leave room in your schedule for you. If every weekend on the calendar has something going on, you don’t have any time to relax and reflect. Stop overcommitting and take a little time for yourself.
- Be honest about the time each project takes. If you allot three hours for an all-day job, you’re going to feel overworked and unproductive. Think carefully about your timeframes. Use a timer if you have to. Then you can schedule yourself in a realistic and manageable manner.
- Put yourself and your family first. You may need to let some people down, but that’s OK. Focus on yourself and your family. Those are the people that matter most. As long as they are happy and cared for, you have done your job.
For more assistance creating a healthy work/life balance, contact Urban Balance at (888) 726-7170. We have therapists who specialize in stress management, depression treatment, anxiety counseling, family counseling, and much more. We will match you with the best specialist for your unique needs.