How To Work Less And Get More Done
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How To Work Less And Get More Done

Easy ways to help your stress level as you go through life.

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How To Work Less And Get More Done
Photo by Minh Pham on Unsplash

Do you ever wish you could hit a pause button on life? So that you could think through all the things you needed to get done and had all the time to do them. Sadly, we don't have that technology yet, but here are a few tips to help make life a little easier.

Figure out what really needs doing

File:Sticky Notes in different colors.jpg - Wikimedia Commons File:Sticky Notes in different colors.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

A lot of the time, I find that I am stressing over things that are either not worth stressing over, or I am overthinking the whole situation. I have learned that actually writing out a list of the things that need doing or the list of problems that need solving. Sometimes having things written out in one sentence helps me realize that it is not as difficult to handle as I originally thought. Writing things out can also give the brain the time it needs to rationalize with itself about certain things, too. For instance, picking up some groceries is not going to take up all of your time because you needed to be at the store anyway to grab a prescription that you keep forgetting about.

Sticky notes or a dry erase board are great to keep around for things like that. You can make a list for shopping (don't forget to add some things that make you happy!), a list of chores tat might need doing (if you've got people, delegation is key), even a list of the good things that are happening, might help a little.

Don't rush

man, wearing, gray, formal, coat, looking, watch, adult, CC0 ... man, wearing, gray, formal, coat, looking, watch, adult, CC0 ...

I hear it all the time; "tomorrow is not a guarantee, so make the most of today." While I do agree that we should live life to the fullest, I think people are misinterpreting what that message means. It does not mean that you are running out of time or that everything has to be rushed because you could be dead tomorrow. What it means is that nothing is for sure so don't stress the small things. Live for the beauty and goodness, for the things you want to remember.

I have also noticed that when we are in a rush, we tend to miss a lot. Either we forget a lot of the things we wanted to get done or we don't do them to the best of our abilities. It's really an oxymoron because we think that if we go faster, we get more accomplished; however, most of the time, it is when we slow down a bit that we get s**t done. And we tend to do better when we take the time to really work at something.

Find a balance between work and home

Man looking at computer monitor | Pikrepo Man looking at computer monitor | Pikrepo

It is really hard to get work/school done at home; we are all learning that the hard way during this pandemic. For most people, home is the place we go to get away from work. It's all about getting stuff done for the family or yourself and relaxing until you have to go back into work. It has become a little different over the past few months as a lot of things become more virtual. People are working form home, schools are switching to online to keep safe. A negative of this is the fact that it is a lot harder to get away from all of that. In our rooms, where we could hide from homework or an annoying boss, we are now holding conferences and class meetings. It seems like wherever we go, these things follow us now. But we can put a bit of a stopper on that.

I know that some people have bigger living spaces than others, but consider this. Find an area; it can be the corner of a room, at a table on the porch, the basement couch, or anywhere that makes sense, and that is where you do most of your work. That is your office, your classroom, your cubical. It is where you get your work done. When you you are not in that space, or you have cleaned up for the day, remember that all the other places in your house are for you to relax and not do work.

The 20/20 break

smiling, man, beside, writing, person, business, real people ... smiling, man, beside, writing, person, business, real people ...

I went to an Ophthalmologist recently to get glasses. He asked me about school and about how often I work on the computer. I told him that I spent 5 or more hours on the computer working on classes or homework as well as other things I need to get done. He asked if I was giving my eyes a real break during this time, and when I said I didn't think so, he looked very disappointed. He said that the longer I looked at the computer or my phone without a break, the more I strained my eyes. He then suggested that I try to take breaks throughout the day and just rest my eyes. I laughed at him. Then he gave me an idea that I think is pretty doable.

Every 20 minutes or so, close your eyes, look away from your device, and close your eyes for at least 20 seconds. He told me that it would give my eyes a little break and help with strain and dryness. It would also lessen headaches and give a brain break with visual stimulus for those 20 seconds or longer. He also said that I should probably walk away from the device, but sometimes that really isn't possible.

Feed yourself!

fruit, restaurant, gastronomic, food, salad, dishes, food and ... fruit, restaurant, gastronomic, food, salad, dishes, food and ...

When life gets crazy, the first thing we nix is usually food. It's so easy to say "I'll eat later" or "I'm too busy to eat right now." We don't think about the benefits of food or what happens when we don't eat. But here's the truth; the less you eat, the more productive. When we skip meals or delay them, we are depriving our brains and bodies of much needed nutrients. We expect so much from our body and mind, but if we don't give it what it needs, it can't help us get through the day. For an average sized woman, 1,200 calories a day is the threshold between starvation and health eating habits.

Carrying snacks and drinks (yes, staying hydrated is important, too) can help you keep up the energy you need to get through your list of tasks. Remember that these snacks should not substitute meals, bur should keep you satisfied and nourished. Fruits like bananas (medium banana= approx. 100 calories) can help increase energy. Also, protein bars (Kind, Cliff, Protein, etc.) can be healthy, good snacks to take on the go.

Make a schedule

Person holding pen and writing on daily report schedule paper ... Person holding pen and writing on daily report schedule paper ...

Time management, it's really important. Especially in our on the go age. We always have places that we need to be. For work or for school, for people in the family, for important appointments. I hear people say that they can never find the time to get everything done. Those same people are the ones who accidentally schedule two important meetings at the same time or forget that their kid has a play date until they are on the way to get their oil changed. Because of this, we are stressed out and end up misusing that precious time. We also want to help people and sometimes we stretch ourselves too thin in an attempt to do it all.

Writing down all the things we need to do is a great way to cut down on the stress of feeling like you don't have enough time. If your friend asks you to help them do something tomorrow, you can look at your phone or planner and check if you are doing something during that time. If you are, you could schedule another time with your friend, but you won't accidentally say yes and then cancel later on. Someone once told me that they would never commit to something if they knew they wouldn't be able to give their full attention and time. we can't always capable of doing that, but keeping some sort of schedule can help make it easier.

Remember that you are appreciated

Royalty-Free photo: People hugging | PickPik Royalty-Free photo: People hugging | PickPik

Everyone wants their efforts to be noticed and appreciated. When they aren't, it can cause stress or sadness. We work very hard throughout our lives and sometimes it feels like our work was for naught. Our teachers give harsh criticism on a painstaking essay, a boss takes credit for something you did or makes you redo it, friends and family don't seem to see how hard you worked on something. People wonder why they should keep doing things.

The world is like a pond, every motion causes a ripple, and that ripple moves a plant. As scary as it seems, most of what we do effects other people. Even something as simple as being nice to someone on the street can make a difference to that person. In work, we have the power to help people, no matter what we do. So even if you don't see it, you could be helping someone and they appreciate it.

There will always be a lot going on in our lives, but that does not mean we always have to be stressed about it.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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