Are deadlines, appointments, to-do lists, and endless papers piling and begging for your time and attention.
Our work lives are filled with physical and mental chaos that creates stress, frustration, anger, and anxiety.
If you feel like a victim of disorder, try my ideas below which I repurposed from this slide-share easy-to-implement approach to help you clear the chaos: SSUM. Stop, Seen, Unseen and Maintain.
Firstly: Stop creating chaos for yourself. Stop accumulating useless stuff. Stop letting your inbox fill up. Stop letting paper work accumulate. Stop letting your voicemail messages accumulate on your phone.
Basically, put up a mental barrier for yourself to stop letting tasks go unattended and force yourself to deal with them.
In the great words of Benjamin Franklin:
“Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today.”
So, now that you have mentally closed the flood gates. Stand back and take a good look at what's in the dam and get to work. First by dealing with anything that can be "seen," such as papers, files, mail, etc. Do not allow half-completed tasks to linger indefinitely that nag and linger, ultimately stealing productivity cycles. Complete anything that you can "see" right now, this instant. And if you can't do it yourself, delegate it. If it's out of place, put it away. If it's not needed, throw it away.
Next step. Block out time in your schedule and dedicate it to digging deeper. And go through the dark, dusty corners of your filing cabinets, desk, task list, to-do list, project management tool, etc., and start completing the "unseens." Again, you need the mindset to: give it away, put it away, deal with it, or throw it away. This is the perfect opportunity to purge. Confront any issues that are keeping you from working at your maximum potential.
Finally, now that you have eliminated the disorder, you must prevent it from seeping back into your life. Implement tools and a system to clear cutter and chaos forever.
For instance, try banishing paper from your work flow. Paper is expensive in a whole lot ways. Use a scanning app like scanbot to PDF all your necessary documents. Drop your docs into Google drive, Dropbox, or whatever program you prefer to organize, sort, and manage your data. Invest the time upfront to create a system so it remains easy to use.
Not only will you be more productive. You will also be doing the environment a solid as well.
Even go a step further and whiteboard or wipebook your notes, thoughts, and ideas. And remember if you need the notes or doodles for future reference, scan them with your phone. Once scanned they are easy to tag, search, organize, and retrieve.
Also remember to make time at least once a week to review your files, tasks, and workflows to keep the chaos in check.
Once you take the steps to wipe out disorder in your work place and workflows, you can reap the benefits of increased efficiency and productivity, with less mental clutter and personal stress. This will allow you to reboot, and begin again feeling refreshed and ready to conquer anything that anyone is willing to throw at you.
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