When You’ve Got Too Much Going On
I don’t know about you, but I feel like there isn’t much of a down season anymore. There’s a festival season, corporate meeting season, holiday season, and more — all blending together to create a full year. As a result, it seems like my to-do list for work and life only gets longer. I’ve been striving to find a better balance during the busy times to make sure I get downtime when work gets a little quieter. Here are a few things I do during my busy times to make sure I give myself time to relax, instead of always playing catch up.
Make a Priority List.
I do this at work and home. In our industry, things pop up all the time, so my list is a bit flexible, but the goal each day is to check off more items then I add. This doesn’t always work, but I make sure to check off at least one thing every day. It also helps to make sure you meet specific deadlines too. The list also helps me address similar things at one time in hopes to get more things done.
I practice this at home, as well. When I get home after a shift, I try to spend at least one-hour taking care of things on my list for my personal life. This can be cleaning for an hour, paying bills, etc. I try to do this each night, so these things don’t pile up. If I have a short day at work, I will try to spend more time working on these items so the days I’m exhausted its ok to skip. This helps to prevent my to-do items from piling up.
Health and Happiness
Within my priority list, I always keep items that will contribute to my health goals and happiness. Often I will list a nap on my priority list. Funny I know, but I enjoy naps so keeping it on my list reminds me it’s ok to prioritize it. A priority list doesn’t have to include tasks you don’t like. It is a list of things you want and need to accomplish. Each person looks at these items differently. I frequently list going for motorcycle rides or going to happy hour with friends to make sure I’m spending time on things that make me happy, just as much as tasks that need to be completed.
It’s ok to say no. When setting your priorities, be it work or home, sometimes just one more thing will not fit, so say no. At work, it may be more of a discussion with a supervisor of what they would like to see done first. Talk about what they would like to see higher on your priority list and adjust from there. At home as long as you’ve got clean underwear, it’s ok to push off laundry to the next day. Again, here look at your list and prioritize what is more important to you, so you feel like you’ve accomplished something as not to get overwhelmed later.
Practicing setting a priority list can help you feel and stay balanced. Crossing items off each list every day will help you accomplish a lot, while also balancing work, home, health, and happiness. Remember not everything on your list needs to be a chore. Anything can go on your priority list it’s intended to help you keep up the things you need and want in mind while a lot is going on.
Heather Holm: Based in Saint Paul, MN; Heather has held many positions in the sound, production, and events business. Most recently as a Production Coordinator serving the Twin Cities area. She holds a BA in Broadcasting and Digital Media Communication and an MS in Organizational Change Leadership. Prior to taking a position with a private production firm, Heather has over seven years of working in higher education dealing with event logistics and production technology and has also been freelancing in the field for several years.