Yikes! Not only does it hurt to have to do so much work, but this stress then carries over into other aspects of our life. Thankfully there some strategies we can take to combat with a busy work schedule and still maintain sanity.
A. Re-think what counts
Sometimes work overload is really just a figment of our imagination. In actuality we may not have that much to do after a bit of re-scheduling, holding off, or cutting down on our to-do list. Find some things you can put off until next week. Also see if you can identify any tasks that you can just forget about completely. Often, “busy-ness” is something we only subject ourselves too when we don’t take the proper time to re-think what really counts. Learn to treasure a bit of minimalism, it’ll help you preserve energy for the more important stuff.
B. Take a siesta or two
As I mention in my one article, “reflection has shown to increase learning, memory, and other cognitive abilities. The more employers apply these revolutionary findings to the workplace the quicker we can move to what I hope to be a more enlightened age for modern capitalism.
C. Dedicate 10-15 minutes toward fitness
OK, we get it – you are “just too busy” to go to the gym. But fitness can be achieved anywhere as long as you have the creativity and dedication to integrate it into your routine. Try taking short breaks and do some push-ups and sit-ups in your office. By doing this you are taking your mind off of your latest assignment and rejuvenating your mental health. Taking an active approach to personal fitness is a great way to channel your stresses and at the same time boost your stamina throughout the day. CEOs take note: one article here illustrates how fitness in the workplace helps increase productivity by boosting employee self-confidence and company morale.
- Edward Stanley
D. Remember the importance of leisure
Leisure is anytime you are actively engaged in something of pleasure. Without the highs we would certainly have greater difficulty bearing the lows; leisure it is what makes life live-able. So, if you don’t already, find yourself some hobbies that really spark your interest and curiosity – something that energizes you and reminds you that there is a good life. And no matter how down or stressed out you may become there are always these one or two things available to lighten your mood.
E. Highlight what you like about your job
Most of us never achieved our childhood dream jobs. That is part of why the jobs we have can be so stressful and overbearing. But there is a mental thing you can do to learn to love your job more. First, make note of the aspects of your job that you do enjoy. That change in focus can help facilitate your workday, and the more you can learn to love, the easier time you will have.
I am not asking you to be delusional and all-smiles as you walk through the office, but to make the best out of what is, and learn the importance of a positive attitude. Rather than going into your day thinking, “Oh no, not another Monday,” instead think, “This will be a fun and productive day.”
What you are creating is a self-fulfilling prophecy – where your expectations affect your behaviors, and in return those behaviors elicit outcomes where your expectations actually come true. This phenomena has shown support in psychology ever since Robert Rosenthal and Lenore Jacobson published a study in 1968. It showed that when teachers have high expectations for students (even when based on false information) it leads to those students actually performing better on their IQ tests. Never underestimate the importance of your attitude and beliefs.
F. As a last resort: say “fuck it all” and take a day off
I would be lying to you if I didn’t include the age old “fuck it all” strategy. Of course it is a last resort, but sometimes it is necessary. I’ve done it myself during busy times of the year where I just need that extra day off to gather up my strength. Work is important, but it is not worth selling your soul for. The times where you feel most exhausted and overtaxed are the best times to stay at home and re-build yourself. But, I don’t recommend skipping out on days where you have an important business meeting or days when a big project is due – you have to use your own best judgment. Don’t do something that will get you fired.
Stay updated on new articles on psychology and self-improvement here.