How to Reduce Stress Part 7: Finding the Time To Do Everything

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How is it that other people seem to fit so much into their day, while I struggle with getting the necessary things done?  I make a list of all of the things I have to do – but it never seems that I get anything done on it, or not nearly enough!  I have too much to do! 

We all know the feeling of “having too much to do”.  Sometimes it is because we have over-scheduled ourselves or because we have procrastinated on a project and now it is just overwhelming and stressful.  Finding the time to do everything is really about sitting down and deciding what needs to be done and what are the most important items on this list.

Many use a ‘to do’ list to help them organize themselves.  Once we have that to-do list though we need to take some additional steps that will help to reduce our stress.

Prioritize each item with a letter A-B-C.  Think about the A’s as the highest priority, either due to size of project or time frame.  B’s as important, but they can wait  and C’s as this would be fun to do.  Then go back through each group and rank them A-1, A-2, etc. and you will soon see what is really important.

In the ranking of each item think about how long will it take, size of the project, how difficult is this project, and what is going to have the biggest impact on my life or goals that I have for myself?  Then take on the most time consuming and hardest ones first.  This way the rest of the items on the list will seem easier when you are starting to feel tired.

Finally remember that you will probably not finish all your A’s, B’s and C’s on your list, but if you get some of the A’s done you will be way ahead for the week.  Be sure to take breaks, but do not allow them to become total distractions by making them so long that you lose track of your time.  If you are choosing to play a game or surf the web – set a timer so you will be aware of when it is time to get back to your plan and tasks at hand.

Getting the important things done will help you feel less anxious about the days and weeks ahead.  It is also about keeping a promise to yourself that you have a goal and permitting you to be in control of your own time.  Time management takes self discipline, and needs to be done on a weekly / daily basis.  If you need help or reminders don’t be afraid to ask someone you trust to kindly help you stay on task.  You will soon find that you are able to manage your time by yourself and will feel less anxious and stressed.

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