No more 47-hour weeks–organize!
Instead of assuming that you’re expected to work extra hours, consider these tips to keep your workload down to 40 hours each week.
Keep your tasks, assignments and deadlines in one place. You can’t see everything ahead of you clearly if your to-dos are spread through emails, a calendar and a notebook. Create a single list of your tasks and deadlines in an electronic document or a task app.
Set your goals and priorities to align with your work-life balance. Set goals for work, but no more than three at a time to avoid overloading yourself. Then set personal priorities, such as not checking email at dinner or committing to a family night once a week.
Learn to say no at work when you need to. It’s OK to turn down someone’s request for help if your plate is already full. If your boss asks you to add a project, ask which of your deadlines can be pushed back to make room for the new task.
Skip email and social media first thing in the morning. Start your day with a list of the three tasks you want to accomplish and begin working on one of those. If you jump into email first thing, you can get sidetracked by other people’s priorities.
Turn off email and smartphone notifications. Keep yourself from getting sidetracked during a project by shutting down the notifications that will interrupt you.
Set a reminder 30 minutes before quitting time. The reminder will let you know that it’s time to start wrapping up for the day. Look back at what you’ve accomplished and set your tasks for the next day before you leave work.
— Adapted from “How To Work Only 40 Hours A Week This Year,” Lisa Rabasca Roepe, Fast Company.