Are you overworked or not prioritizing?
One challenge many young professionals face is juggling their tasks and responsibilities.
If you're one of them - take a moment to think. Is it the workloads and high expectations that are causing you stress or your lack of priorities?
Many believe they completely grasp the process of prioritization. But more likely than not, this is one skill that is only mastered over time.
To relieve the burdens and manage stress, you not only have to focus on, but also organize your priorities.
The good news? You can develop priority management in a few simple steps. Though some may seem elementary and logical, they're often overlooked under heavy workloads.
Step 1: Understand what and how things need to get done. Don't assume you're a mind reader or that you know other's deadlines and expectations. Ask the right questions to gain a full understanding of what needs to get done and in what order. Once you have clarified this with everyone, you can effectively plan your strategy.
Step 2: Make a to-do list and organize it. None of the successful people I know – from mid-level managers to CEOs – start their day without a plan. They list each item and the due date, then rank their level of priority. This is how they proceed throughout the day, week and year.
Step 3: Be honest. When you plan and focus your list, be realistic with your time. Account for interruptions, changes, or problems that will delay your progress. Also, don't forget to organize based on quick wins versus those that will take more time or rely on others.
Step 4: Finally, stay focused. Do not let others set your priorities for you. Likewise, don't let your internal desires persuade you to complete less important ones.
Periods of stress and heavy workloads are never easy, but you can and must manage them.
2. Gain clarity.
Doing this will not only help you navigate through the difficult times but can help with your career growth and goals.
Brian T. King is the founder and owner of multiple firms encompassing design, construction, real estate, and manufacturing, and currently president of the integrated Design-Build firm A M King. Brian shares his passion for mentoring young professionals, rising managers and entrepreneurs at speaking engagements around the country, on podcasts and via his blog.