These days it can feel like you never catch up at work. The Washington Post’s career coach, Joyce E.A. Russell, offers tips to help you get caught up once and for all.
1. Get more sleep. Taking time to rest ensures you’ll be working at peak performance levels when you sit down to work.
2. Take breaks. Moving your body and resting your mind can really help you recharge. Take a walk without your cellphone at least once a day.
3. Seek help. Is it possible to outsource some of your routine tasks at the office? Will a housekeeper free up time at home?
4. Focus on priorities. “Prioritize the one or two most important things you need to accomplish each day. Then make sure those things get done,” says Russell. “As Stephen Covey points out in his book, First Things First, we should consider whether tasks are urgent and/or important. Focus on the urgent, important items first, followed by the important but not urgent. If time permits, we can tackle the urgent but not important items or the issues that are neither urgent nor important.”
5. Set boundaries. If you’re too busy, push back a little when new tasks arise. Say “no” if necessary.
6. Schedule a catch-up day or a catch-up afternoon or week to clear your calendar and just focus on catching up on the things you put off.
— Adapted from “Career Coach: Tips for Getting Caught Up,” Joyce E.A. Russell, The Washington Post.