We all know the feeling: you have so much work to tackle that you probably won’t be done until the end of the year. And as always when you have too much to do, new tasks just keep coming in!
As a result, you’re feeling incredibly stressed, don’t know where to start, and keep jumping from one project to the next without ever finishing anything.
Does this sound familiar?
The truth is, these situations will never feel like a walk in the park. But if you tackle your immense workload methodically and follow the suggestions outlined below, you will be able to finish on time and not completely freak out.
Don’t take on more work when you already have too much to do
As silly as it sounds, it’s hard to say no to projects when they go hand in hand with more money.
If you’re a freelancer like me, you probably know what I mean. Each additional task means additional pay, and who can say no to that?
But no matter how much you want the money: taking on more work when you’re already swamped is always a bad idea. You will not have enough time to devote to each task. In the end, You’ll probably end up decreasing your work quality just to get everything done. Do you really want to deliver something you’re not 100% proud of?
So no matter how tempting it is to accept a new project: if you’ve already got too much to deal with, just pass on it.
Write everything down
If you’ve read my posts before, you’ll know that I’m obsessed with to-do lists. And there’s a good reason for that!
There’s only so much we can remember at a time. If you’ve got a crazy workload, chances are that there a million little things you have to think of. Keeping all of it in your head will just add to your stress, and you’re practically bound to forget something!
Instead, write everything down in a comprehensive to-do list. This way, you’ll get a much better overview of all the work you have to do. And you won’t need to stress about forgetting anything!
I’ve explained in detail how to best
Don’t plan too little time for each task
You have way too much to do, and all you can think of is the relief you’ll feel when all that is done. I get that. But dreaming about being done can negatively impact your time management.
For instance, you might be tempted to plan too little time to finish all your tasks, hoping that you’ll just make it work somehow.
Well, I don’t recommend you do that.
First of all, planning too little time per task will constantly make you feel like you’re underperforming. Missing a deadline is just not fun. Even if you imposed that deadline on yourself and know that is was a bit optimistic.
And second of all, you won’t be able to accurately
So, instead of setting a schedule you wish you could follow, create one that’s actually realistic.
Spending a bit of extra time on time management and
Don’t put your life on hold
Yes, I know, you have too much work to do. But just because your workload has increased, this doesn’t mean that you suddenly don’t have to eat, or drink, or see your family anymore.
No matter how heavy your workload is, you can’t put your life on hold until it’s done. It’s not a sustainable solution!
Instead, allow yourself to sleep, have breakfast, exercise, and take little breaks to recharge. If you follow a balanced lifestyle, you’ll have more energy and be more productive. And this, in turn, means that you’ll get everything done much faster.
Turn off all distractions
We’re most productive when we focus on one single task at a time and devote 100% of our attention to it. So if you have too much to do, be sure to work out a realistic time schedule and stick to it. Do not switch between tasks!
A great way to limit any distractions is to turn off your phone, close your outlook and any other messaging service you might use, and work on the task you scheduled until you’re done.
You can plan time in between tasks to check your emails and respond to them. But even then, don’t bother replying to things that aren’t important!
Being able to work on one thing at a time not only makes you more efficient, but it does a great job at limiting stress, too. Following this strategy will make you more focused, so you’ll finish your work a lot quicker!
So here you go, these are the basic rules I follow whenever I have too much to do. Please let me know if they work for you, or if you have any other tips to share!