As entrepreneurs, we always have that one constant restraint. Can you guess what it is? It’s our time! There are always things to do, people to meet, places to go but our time is the one thing that remains limited.
The honest truth is that the majority of the time, we won’t be able to complete the things we set out to do. Then when we don’t achieve our goals or tick off those boxes on our to-do lists, we kick ourselves and end up feeling overwhelmed as the tasks start to build up and our goals and ambitions grow.
I want to share a few of my top tips on how you can prevent this, and stop yourself from overwhelmed.
The first thing to do is to set realistic targets. The fact of the matter is that you can’t do it all, so choose your targets wisely and give yourself a realistic time frame based on your overall workload and not just how long it should take you. Take into account the whole picture including all the other projects, maintenance tasks (answering calls/emails) as well as things in your personal life such as family time, socialising and generally planning for having some breathing space.
Contrary to what you may believe, your brain isn’t equipped for handling more than one task at a time. Do you ever get the feeling after a full day of work that you have nothing to show for it? This is usually because you’ve been multitasking all day and you have a load of half finished tasks! Multitasking even though you may feel productive, in reality, you won’t get as much done as focusing on one task at a time.
My trick to stop multitasking is to create a very focused to do list that is limited to 3-5 activities all with a key theme. For example, if your main goal that day is client acquisition, build a to-do list with the main activities you need to carry out in order to achieve this. Then, pick the hardest task first, remove all distractions (close all the tabs on your laptop, switch off other devices etc) and set a timer and get to work.
The outcome of effective time management will be a feeling of mastery over your workload, your time and your energy!
Sometimes the best thing to do when your feeling overwhelmed is to just stop everything and give your mind a break. You won’t be able to work to your full potential if you’re feeling stressed or worn down.
So when you’re feeling like you’re ready to give up and burning out is on the horizon. Stop and take a minute. Clear your mind by doing something that you don’t need to think about. Brew yourself a coffee, go for a brisk walk, exercise, meditate – do what you need to do to clear your mind and start fresh.
Are you are doing anything manually that you struggle with or causes you to feel distressed? Work out if there is an easier or better way to do it. For example, can you use a software to automate certain tasks or even outsource an expert to do it for you? Fiverr is a great source if you are wanting an extra pair of hands to help you with day-to-day tasks.
Originally published at jenniferhardie.me