Our rooms and wardrobes are not the only areas that need decluttering or organizing. On the top of our list to declutter should also be our schedule especially since having a busy/cluttered schedule doesn’t translate to productivity, as a matter of fact, it is quite the opposite.
How do you know when to declutter?
According to dictionary.com declutter means to organize and prioritize one’s commitment, material possession etc. If you feel stressed out and like there is insufficient time to rest, then it may be time to consider decluttering your schedule. This year has been quite busy for me, combining masters with running a blog and trying to meet up with the magazine print deadline. Between liaising with my designer, printers, and school work, I felt like I had a lot of things to do with little or no time and the list just kept on piling up. Guess what? All of these started telling on my health. Since I was getting little rest/sleep, my body was heating up at night and not to talk about the fact that I started to forget important things. Then I knew it was time for me to declutter and I would be sharing how I did so.
#1. LEARN TO SAY NO
With my busy schedule, I kept on taking more tasks, you would think that I would know better since I was taking a project management course but I didn’t. I went out of my way to help my colleagues who needed my help even when it wasn’t convenient for me especially when I needed to be resting. My friend kept on getting upset with me as she could see I needed rest but I wasn’t paying attention to the signs. Even though I wrote about how I wanted to start saying No this year to tasks/projects that were time-consuming. Well, my resolve to say no got strengthened when I reached the burnout phase.
Related post: Tips To Avoid Burnout
#2. DELEGATE TASKS
Sometimes as high functioning individuals we tend to want to do everything by ourselves. It is okay to need the help of others. As a leader/CEO/Boss, it isn’t right to think that only you can get the job done, it simply means that you are not a great leader, you haven’t taught others what they need to know to take charge when you are unavailable. Trust the people you work with, teach them what they need to know, and point out areas of improvement. You must allow people to grow by delegating tasks. It can be terrifying but it saves up your time.
#3. REMOVE NON-PRIORITY TASKS
Go through your schedule and eliminate non-priority tasks/activities. Leave no room for time-consuming activities that offer no value – I call them the ‘time stealers’. We all have those tasks and may not realize they exist until we scrutinize our schedules. This has worked for me. It means that you should value your time. Does social media consume more of your time than necessary? Do not hesitate to limit the time you spend on it.
#4. DON’T TRY TO DO SO MUCH IN SO LITTLE TIME
The problem lies in the fact that we try to do a lot of things in a small amount of time and thus we end up cluttering our schedule. Learn to space out your schedule. I tried to do so much within a brief period, it wasn’t working for me. When I organized my schedule to do one task at a time I discovered I had plenty time left for other activities. What happened when I did this was that my focus was undivided and I was able to execute my tasks on time, giving me extra time to start other tasks I had scheduled. The notion that there is so much to do with little time is unreal, what we do is try to cram so many tasks into little time that we end up thinking that we do not have enough time. So, what do you do when you have a lot to do?
- Schedule one task/project at a time – eliminate distractions that hinder your focus on the task at hand
- Do not schedule two tasks at the same time
- Live in today
#5. USE TECHNOLOGY
Technology has made scheduling easy. Create a to-do list using available tools. Simply use the calendar on your phone for scheduling. Using technology to schedule ensures that we have a clear well-planned schedule. If you prefer traditional methods of scheduling then by all means. Ensure you use whatever means works for you.