I don't know about you, but even though I'm years outside of college, fall will always feel like "back to school time." October is a time to make lists, buy office supplies & get organized. As an introvert & Type A, I retreat from chaos and revel in the simple pleasure of a color-coded schedule.
However, even I have problems staying on task sometimes. That's why this month's newsletter is all about organization & time management.
☑ Make To-Do Lists the night before. You know all those tasks you simply HAVE to get done tomorrow that keep running through your mind as your head hits the pillow? Write them down now. You'll be less likely to forget anything and you'll sleep better without the running commentary in your head.
☑ Prioritize your tasks and do the most important thing first. This sounds like a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised how often we put off our most daunting tasks until we've run out of time to do them. Bonus: Getting your big project done can be very invigorating. Your sense of accomplishment might just be the energy boost you need to carry you through the rest of your to-do list.
☑ Don't overwhelm yourself. After years of to-do list trial and error, I have come to realize that I can't metabolize more than 3-4 things a day. Looking at a list of 20 big ticket items sends me into a frenzy. I end up jumping from task to task, trying to get everything done at once, and at the end of the day nothing is finished. So, in the interest of my own sanity, I keep my lists full of just a few really important tasks surrounded by daily small items like yoga, breakfast, & showering.
☑ Keep a list of "someday" items. Finished with your 3-4 items early in the day? Head over to your list of "somedays," items that don't take top priority, but still need to be done eventually. I love the iPhone app/website combo Teux Deux for making my "somedays" easily tranfered to "today". [And no, they're not paying me, I just really appreciate a good to-do list app. ♥]
☑ Give yourself some break time. Can't stay off facebook while working? Me neither. That's why I have started using a timed system: 25 minutes of productivity, 10 minutes of facebook. This system gives my brain a break, but also helps me stay on task while I'm working. Knowing that I have a limited amount of time sparks my competetive edge...can I beat the clock to the finish line? There are several websites & mobile apps dedicated to timing your productivity. Personally, I use Focused Lite because it's free AND it lets me download a playlist to jam out to during my break time.
☑ Leave your work at the desk. In our workaholic culture, it's hard to not take your work home with you [especially for those of us who work from home]. However, at some point during the day, you have to leave it at the desk. Make sure you schedule time for yourself sans list-making and task timers at the end of the day. Leave the office, cook dinner, take a long bath, and don't think about work until the next morning. Allowing yourself some downtime will reduce your overall stress levels, improve your health, and re-invigorate you for the next work day.
Special: Free Sugar Blues Workshop
Just in time for candy-covered Halloween, I'm offering a FREE Sugar Blues Workshop Call to help readers deal with sugar addiction & learn how to satisfy their sweet tooth in a healthy way.
When: Friday, October 26th
Where: By Phone
Sign up: By email. Title the subject "Sugar Blues Conference Call" & include your name, phone number, & favorite sweet treat.
Vlog: Staying Warm in Cooler Months
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It’s such a pleasure to help those closest to us become happier and healthier. Please forward this newsletter to friends, family members or colleagues who might be interested and inspired by it.