- Divide and conquer. Break up large projects into smaller tasks. If you think a task will take less than five minutes, get it done right away. If you can reply to an email in less than two minutes, reply immediately and file or delete the incoming email.
- Fight procrastination. One of the easiest ways to fight procrastination is to focus on starting your task. Commit to your task for just ten minutes. Avoid distractions and interruptions and continue to work for just ten minutes. By the end of the ten minutes, you probably get absorbed in the tasks, build momentum and can choose to continue working towards completion.
- Put things in their place. Designate a place at your home and office for everything—your keys, wallet, watch, clothes, electronic gadgets and all personal effects. Always put each item in its proper place. Being orderly prevents you from anxiously searching for these belongings the next time you want to use them.
- Create checklists for all tasks. Consider preparing checklists for everything from cleaning the home to packing for travel. Checklists help you remember everything critical and thus reduce the persistent worry of forgetting something important.
- Start planning your day on the prior day. Before you leave office or before you go to bed, plan the next day and prepare a ‘To Do’ list. Check your calendar for meetings, deadlines and commitments. In addition, put out everything you need the night before. Planning ahead not only helps you start the next day with purpose, but also gets things off your mind. You can thus enjoy your time away or sleep better.
- Pick up after yourself and clean your home and workspace. From time to time, glance through all areas of your home and office for things that are out of place. Tidy up before the clutter gets out of hand. Use the wastebasket liberally. Realize that mess leads to stress.
- Maintain a ‘On-The-Go’ folder. When you receive your copy of a subscription magazine, tear out all the articles that interest you and dispose of the rest of the magazine. Maintain an “on-the-go” folder and file such articles. Take this folder wherever you go and read these articles during transition times—when you wait for a doctor’s appointment or when your flight is delayed at an airport. Review this folder frequently and toss out everything that is older than six months.
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