We are burned out. We are distracted. And we are overwhelmed. At EPI, we see it on our own team and recognize it in our clients and industry colleagues. We balance so many roles—spouse, partner, parent, employee, distance-learning educator, housekeeper, and short-order cook (just to name a few!)—that we’re pulled in many directions. This can leave us feeling like we are doing everything… yet doing nothing to our full potential.
One of the best ways you can address feeling overwhelmed at work is to set good boundaries. With good boundaries in place, you can reduce stress and anxiety and maximize your productivity. Here are three tips to help you set boundaries today!
1. Pick a Time to Start and Stop Work.
Perhaps you no longer have a commute but “arriving” and “departing” from your laptop is blurring your lines between “work” time and “off” time. Instead of logging in early to get a jump-start on work, use that extra time to do a non-work task or enjoyable activity instead. Set an official start time to your workday and pick a time to “leave the office,” and stick to them as much as possible. This will help give you the needed separation between home and work.
2. Turn Off Your Alerts.
Push notifications ruin your productivity! Alerts for email, group chats, text, social media, etc., are distracting to anyone. We take an average of about 23 minutes to resume our interrupted focus!
3. Schedule Time to Focus.
Block your calendar so you can dedicate time for focused work on high-priority tasks. In addition, treat this blocked time as a real meeting and limit interruptions. When you have a schedule to follow, you’ll spend less time determining what to work on and more time dedicated to your essential tasks. And reward yourself when you’re successful!
Each of these tips will help you reclaim a sense of agency. What other boundaries have you set to help boost your productivity?
Michelle Kelly, CEO (Chief Enjoyment Officer)