The old me struggled to accomplish everything I needed to get done in a day. There were days when it felt like my work was taking over and the work-life balance I dreamt of was out of reach. As we transition to a slower pace for fall, it's important to remember to add the following habits into your day during the week to ensure you're maximizing each day. With these tips, you can regain control, get more done with less stress, and find some time for the things you love!
1. Stop multitasking.
Yes, you read that right. Most of us have had to learn how to multitask on the job: googling four things at once, answering an email while you're on the phone, and writing a report while also trying to catch up on news topics. We've all been there and if I have to be sincerely honest, it's exhausting! But here's why you should stop multitasking: it's stressful! Every time you switch between tasks you pay a "switching cost": after a distraction, it takes approximately 25 minutes before you are 100% fully focused again. When you multitask, you are 40% less productive than when you single-task. So switching tasks constantly, you ultimately get less work done which causes you to experience more work pressure and stress.
2. Take mini-breaks.
I've been guilty of not doing this and I also know many people who are used to working indefinitely without taking a break. The justification I often hear is that they have a heavy workload, a strict deadline, a long-term sick colleague, or an urgent request from a hugely important client. But to stay sharp and focused, it is essential to take mini-breaks despite all those urgent matters. When you take mini-breaks throughout your day it helps you improve focus, concentration and provides the opportunity for mental and physical rest. After a break, work can resume with more energy and motivation.
3. Do something for yourself each day.
The idea of making time for self-care can be daunting. Most of us feel like we don’t have enough time, or there is just too much to do; it almost feels selfish to make time for ourselves. The truth is, the more we can find balance and take care of ourselves, the more we can give to others and the less likely it is that we will burn out! It can be the simplest of things like going out for a 15-minute walk, meditating, calling a friend to catch up, or giving yourself a self-massage.