I'm always behind

I'm always behind

Oct 01, 2005

Christiane Holbrook
Q. There aren't enough hours in the day to finish all of my duties. What should I do?

"You may find you can be more productive if you choose your most focused times to tackle the toughest tasks," says Christiane Holbrook, a professional coach and founder of Inspiration Gym in Pasadena, Calif. How do you know when you're at your best? Test yourself, Holbrook says.

Stop yourself every two hours throughout the day and rate your energy on a scale of one to 10. One means you're feeling wimpy, and 10 means you're ready to take on the world.

Once you identify your most productive work times, you can organize your tasks more efficiently. For example, Holbrook suggests taking a few minutes at the end of the day to prepare your to-do list for the following morning. "Ten minutes of planning can be more effective than an hour of action," Holbrook says.

If you still feel overloaded, it might be time to talk to the boss. Just be sure you bring solutions to the discussion, Holbrook says. "Perhaps you can delegate something you dread working on. You'd be surprised how many people love doing what you don't. When talking to your boss, suggest that you would like to take on more tasks you love and you're good at and give those you dread to others who enjoy them. That turns a potential complaint into a solution, and it's much more likely to create change," she says.