Mobile ‘Reminder-pings’ ringing in your ears,  calendar ‘To Do’s’ popping up  every 20 minutes and a desk full of paperwork slowly developing into a mountain!  The workplace is getting busier and busier and at a time where everyone expects everything instantly you feel like you’re under-performing and being put under unrealistic pressure to get your job done.

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“83% of people claim to be stressed at work in a survey carried out by Harris Interactive on behalf of Everest College, Oct 2013”

Unfortunately the workplace isn’t going to change anytime soon and with increasing pressures to meet tight deadlines it’s important that you learn not only how to manage your time but how to excel under pressure!

Our very simple guide to prioritising will help. And remember popular knowledge believes it can take up to 3 weeks to get into a new routine so give it time and you’ll find your career gets a lot easier to manage.

1. Understand your Body’s Natural Rhythm

Some people preform better in the morning whilst others achieve more in the afternoon.  Recognise when you’re at your best and schedule in your time accordingly.  If you become sluggish at 3 in the afternoon make sure you use this time to complete routine and menial tasks.

2. Prioritise and Delegate Today

Begin by creating a list of everything you need to do. Once you have your list these can be divided into 2 areas – we like to call them ‘Eggs and Rice’.  ‘Rice’ tasks are your little tasks, these may be to ‘order furniture for an exhibition’, ‘to arrange a hotel  for a business meeting next month’ etc., individually the ‘Rice’ tasks are relatively simple to carry out.

The other tasks we like to call ‘Eggs’.  ‘Egg’ tasks are usually large projects which have a real impact on the day to day management of your role such as ‘source a new advertising agency’, ‘arrange staff appraisals or ‘produce a wireframe for the new website’

Once you’ve written your list you should try and delegate as many of the ‘Rice’ tasks as you can, whilst scheduling in quality time to work on your ‘Egg’ projects.  These projects are the ones you will be judged and measured on by peers and management. Turn off your email, divert your phone and get the big jobs done!

Don’t get distracted by the ‘Rice’ tasks and if you don’t have anyone to delegate them to, then try to schedule them in at the time of day when you are better positioned to deal with them.

3.Establish Routine and Focus

Highly tied in to your body’s natural rhythm make sure you establish as much routine into your day as possible.  If you preform better in the morning then choose to focus on your ‘Egg’ tasks then (no multi-tasking during this time) and concentrate on more menial tasks in the afternoon.

Schedule these times into your diary i.e. if you’re working on a large project make sure your diary lets everyone know not to disturb you. If working from home is an option then this could also help you to avoid distractions.  Distractions will prevent you from completing your goal so make other team members aware that you are taking time out to finish an important project.

 Good Luck!