Stress Busters: 7 Tips for Effective Time Management

May 24th, 2011

Overwhelmed by the number of projects you have at work? Feel like the days fly by without getting anything done due to distractions and interruptions? As Houston recruiters, we know that if this is the case, your productivity could be decreasing, while your stress level is on the rise, which can impact your overall health. In fact, according to the American Medical Association, stress can be linked to approximately 80-85% of all medical conditions and illnesses.

Here are some ideas to help you get back on track, manage your time better, and reduce stress. Don’t try every single one at once. That may stress you out even further! Instead, adapt one or two ideas for a few weeks to see how they work. If things go well, consider adapting others.

1. Evaluate how you’re spending time.

Track your time for one day. Record everything you do between work hours, from the commute to checking emails. What you find out could be surprising. For instance, if you’re spending more time than you thought in your car during the commute, can you take a bus or ride the train instead and get some work done on your way to the office?

2. Prioritize tasks.

It sounds simple enough, but are you really prioritizing each task in your day? If not, you could be scrambling at the last minute to get important projects done. One way to prioritize is to make two lists everyday. One that includes “must do” activities and the other that includes the activities you’d “like to get done.” Not only will you feel more in control, but you’ll minimize conflicts and the need to rush around.

3. Break tasks up.

One gigantic task could leave you feeling uncertain of where to begin. Instead, break the task up into smaller, more manageable pieces and set a reasonable time limit for getting each task done.

4. Learn to say “no.”

If you’re already feeling overworked and overwhelmed, then learn to set boundaries and say “no.”

5. Disconnect.

When you have a looming deadline, it’s time to disconnect and focus. That means no logging into Facebook or LinkedIn or sending out email messages.

6. Delegate tasks.

If you can, hand off certain tasks to someone else.

7. Don’t multitask.

Studies show that multi-tasking can actually make you less productive, not more. In one study, researchers at Stanford University found that students who regularly juggle high-tech activities such as checking email and text messages, and surfing the Internet pay less attention, have trouble remembering what they’ve seen, and are less adept at switching from one task to another. So focus on doing one task at a time – and do it really well.

If part of your stress is due to a job search, Murray Resources can help. As top Houston recruiters, we can give you access to leading employers and job opportunities in and around the Houston area. Contact us today to learn more.

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