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Time Management Strategies for Avoiding Holiday Overwhelm

When it comes to the busy holiday season, the one thing that most of us can attest to is the feeling of wishing we had more time. More time to get the shopping done, more time for all the parties and events, more time to spend with loved ones, more time to get work done (because those deadlines don’t disappear just because it’s the holidays!). Juggling it all in a fixed amount of time can be exhausting and frustrating – which are the last two feelings you want to have this time of year. That’s where this NYC Professional Office Organizer comes in – try these time management strategies to help you stay productive and still enjoy this busy season.

Keep work at work and home at home. It’s not always possible, but when you can, leave your work at work. Assign deadlines in the office so that you are committed to finishing your tasks by a hard stop time. By leaving work at work, you’ll be able to enjoy your time at home without being distracted. This strategy helps you focus on what’s in front of you, and really will allow you to get things done. At work, you’ll be more productive because you are only focused on your tasks and know you have a firm end time. At home, you’ll be able to enjoy your time with family and friends without excusing yourself to go check an email.

Don’t forget the power of writing it down. I mean it – write it all down…every single thing. Trying to keep deadlines and meetings in your head, along with remembering to pick up a last-minute gift or holiday card on the way home is just a recipe for disaster. You can’t remember everything and you don’t have to. Add every task and project to your task list or your project management system. Use that to-do list to make sure you are getting everything done by their deadlines. The bonus? You won’t have forgotten to finish something and must skip a family party to stay late at the office.

You can’t do everything at once. It’s so easy to think we can handle everything and get a few things done at the same time. It can be very tempting to be on a conference call and try and finish up some online shopping at the same time. Though this might sound like a time-saving idea, this approach can backfire on you. When you do more than one thing at a time, you are more likely to miss important updates, assignments, or even deadlines. Plus, you’ll lose even more time later on when you have to backtrack to figure out what you missed.

You can say no – for real! I know this is a hard one, and we want to make sure we see all the people we care about and don’t want to be rude to any open invitations. But the truth is that these events and commitments can eat up a lot of valuable time. You aren’t obligated to attend every office party or client event that you are invited to, so pick and choose which events are most important to you and which fit best into your work and family schedule.

Remember that the holidays are supposed to be a joyful time of year, not chaotic and overwhelming. In order to manage your tasks and still have enough time to enjoy your favorite events of the season, prioritize and stay focused. For more time management tips and strategies, reach out to this NYC Professional Office Organizer.

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