Saturday, 21 October 2017

How To ManageYour Time When You're Busy And Overwhelmed

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All of us have those moments sometimes, when we feel tired, frustrated, with not enough time and too many responsibilities.

Last year, tempted by additional income and possibilities of development, I agreed to take a side job. Shortly after I realized that it wasn’t a good decision. It consumed too much of my time, and was very stressful.

Working 12 hours almost every day, all I thought about after coming home was eating and going to bed. I was doing only absolutely necessary things, most of the time eating badly, not taking care of myself and having the sink full of dirty dishes.

It all made me feel even worse. But how on earth would i find time and energy to cook, clean and do other things?  

First thing to think about in that kind of situation is - get some help. If you’re not living by yourself, every person in your household should have some responsibilities. Many times I see my friends struggling because they work, cook, clean, take care of their children and they just do everything by themselves because their husbands/wives/partners “don’t know” how to do those things. Don’t let yourself to be caught in that trap. Anyone can learn anything. One time I asked my partner to cook potatoes for a dinner, he said that he can’t because he doesn’t know how to peel potatoes, I told him: “Well, I wasn’t born with that ability either, I had to learn at some point, so try and you’ll learn too”.

If you are able to, you can also pay someone to do some things for you, get a cleaner once a week or two. The point is - you really don’t have to do everything by yourself. Many times we take too much on ourselves because we don’t even ask for help.

After you delegate some of the tasks, you can focus on things that are really your responsibilities.  As usually in my case, planning and making lists is most powerful.

Usually I can find 5 minutes at work to make a to-do list for those 2 hours after I get back home. But if you can’t do this at work, maybe you can do this the evening before, or when you drink your morning coffee.

Estimate how much time you will have in the evening. Leave some time for relax between finishing all the tasks and the moment you should be already asleep.
List all the things you need to do. Start with most important tasks for you.  Include everything that you have to do before going to bed, including preparing food, eating, taking shower.

Calculate how much time each task will take. Fill in the time that you planned for the work with your tasks. For example, if you will have 2 hours, plan the schedule only for those 2 hours, if you’ve got more to do, move some things for the next day.

Set a timer for each activity - it will help you stay motivated and keep track of time. Also you’ll see how much time you spend on those things actually and will help you with future planning.

Get to work immediately, if you sit down even for 5 minutes to watch TV, because you want to rest before you begin, most likely you will not begin at all.

When you will have everything done, it’s time to relax. Find time for that each day, it’s really important not to work all the time, let your mind and body rest a little. Make it a moment only for yourself and do something that really helps you to forget about everything and gives you joy.

This method helped me get through that difficult time. It wasn’t easy. Most of days I didn’t feel like doing anything, but I knew that if I come home and sit on a couch I will be stressed the next day about the mess, about what to eat at work, about finding some clean clothes to wear.

While this way of time-management may help in stressful and busy periods in your life, be aware that being in a situation like that for a long time may be very harmful for your well-being. Think of a solution how to change that situation, how to redirect your life to have more time and be less stressed.

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