9 Practical Ways to Cope With Overwhelming Tasks at Work
The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today.
Working is fun, but there are days that we get too overwhelmed at work. Those emails piling up, deadlines coming, and tasks that are left unchecked might make you feel anxious, stressed, and worried.
Then you’ll get so busy that you can hardly make time to have fun and relax. However, remember that aiming to be more productive is much better than being too busy or tired.
Before you experience emotional burnout, here are ways to cope with your overwhelming tasks at work:
1. Create a to-do list
To avoid missing out on important tasks and deadlines, always create your to-do list. Categorize the major tasks from the minor ones, and list your deadlines from the earliest submission to the latest.
This way, you’ll know which assignments need to be prioritized first. As much as possible, list your whole tasks for the week and deadlines for the month.
You can also use sticky notes or phone apps to check/uncheck your lists. And don’t forget to place a calendar on your desk. It may be old school because you already have one in your phone and laptop, but a desk calendar is the easiest way to view the tasks that go along with the dates.
2. Stick to your schedule
One of the major reasons why you get overwhelmed at work is because you tend to break your schedules.
No matter how big or small the task for today is, stick to your schedule. Since your brain is already set on what you have to do for the rest of the day or week, breaking the schedule will only make you less productive, since your mind is not prepared.
It’s always about quality over quantity. It doesn’t matter how many tasks you finish today. If you’re just speeding up things, the work will never be great. That’s why you have to-do lists and schedules to follow.
3. Ask guidance and feedback
When it comes to the world of career growth, guidance and feedback are both important.
Either in business or work, you have people working with you. So always be open to suggestions, feedback, learnings, and ideas.
If you don’t know something, learn from someone who knows. If you’re unsure, ask for help or guidance. Doing this will help develop your skills and knowledge.
A wise and successful man once said: the moment you stop learning, is the moment you’ll stop earning.
4. Be honest on your workload
You know yourself better than anyone else. If your workload is too much, you can always ask your colleagues to help you. Or tell them you’ll reschedule the task at the best or most appropriate time.
And as said on number 2, forcing yourself to finish a task won’t bring good results. Your team needs to know this in order to establish a healthy and safe workplace. And if one of them asks assistance from you, be sure to be a helping hand too.
5. Maintain a healthy work-life balance
Maintaining a healthy work-life balance will not only help you become more productive at work, but it will also contribute to better health.
One way to do this is to set boundaries.
If it is your lunchtime, stop scrolling on your emails so you can enjoy your meal. If it is your bedtime, stop thinking about work in order to sleep well. And during your day off, don’t bring your work with you.
Lastly, take vacations if you need to. All of these might be difficult to do, especially when you love your job. But vacations are too important for your overall wellness so don’t delay or neglect them.
6. Take breaks as needed
Some people prefer to finish their tasks in one sitting rather than taking breaks in between. However, doing this is not healthy for the brain cells, which can make you less productive. Plus, working continuously without breaks can cause the following health issues:
- Eyestrain or poor vision
- Unnecessary weight gain
- Poor concentration
- Muscle spasm
- Creaky joints or joint pains
- Poor blood circulation
Therefore, make sure you give some time to take short breaks to allow your mind and body to relax. Even just 5 to 10 minutes will do. Drink plenty of water, go outside for a while to breathe in fresh air, gently massage your temples, and stretch.
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7. Know when you’re most productive
Have you experienced having difficulty finishing an easy or normal task? This can be a sign that you need to change your time into when you're most productive.
Some people are most productive in the morning, so they prefer to do the major tasks during this time of the day. While others prefer accomplishing the minor tasks first, before they proceed to the major ones.
Either of the two is fine. The goal is to not not put too much pressure on yourself to prevent being too exhausted at work.
8. Limit your distractions
It’s easy to get distracted when you’re at work, either when you’re in the office or at home.
A simple chat from your co-worker or watching TV can steal 15 to 30 minutes of your time.
Never let distractions ruin your momentum in working. Taking breaks is different from being distracted. After you take a quick break (as what is said on number 6), proceed to your tasks immediately to avoid procrastination.
9. Hydrate and eat healthy
When you’re too busy at work, you won’t even notice that you’re not drinking enough water. Lack of water can result in mild dehydration, which can affect your cognitive ability. With this, you may experience poor concentration, headaches, and brain fog.
To avoid this, place a large water bottle on your work desk so you don’t have to keep refilling it from time to time. It’s also good to have one that has water indication on it to track your fluids intake.
In addition, eat healthy snacks and meals. Avoid junk foods and ordering out, no matter how busy you get. That’s why you have your to-do list and schedules to help you make time to buy and prepare healthy foods.
Running out of easy and healthy meals to prepare? Here are two blogs might help you:
- How to Pack Easy and Healthy Lunch: Checklist for Heart-Friendly Meals
- An Easy 7-Day Meal Plan to Increase Your Energy Levels
Happy working! You got this!
- Useful Tips on How to Manage Common Work-Related Stress
- Healthy Habits to Keep In Mind While Working from Home
- 12 Habits of People Who Have Proper Work-Life Balance
- Want Stronger Joints? Move Your Body More
- The Best Thing About A Multi-Collagen Supplement
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