Our society places a lot of emphasis on both time and money. Some people like to say that time is money, so it’s no surprise that the issue of time weighs heavily on our minds. If you’re like most of us, you probably think that there’s never enough time to get everything done that you need to do before turning in for the night. Between work, family, and social obligations, we find ourselves hurrying through the day, spinning as many plates as possible before collapsing into bed at night only to start the whole charade over again in the morning. Is it any wonder that we find ourselves feeling anxious and struggling to beat depression?
If you want to learn how to deal with stress, you can start by learning how to manage your time effectively. When you feel that you have control over your day, you’ll feel less anxious, be better prepared to beat depression back, and you’ll likely be more productive as well. Consider the following time (and stress) management techniques.
- Do the hardest thing first.
We all have certain tasks that we dread. No matter how much you love your job (and I hope you do!), nearly every position comes with its fair share of challenging or unpleasant chores. Perhaps it’s a presentation that you’re not exactly looking forward to or a report that you know will be tedious. Whatever it is, tackle your most difficult task first before going about the rest of your day. That way, it won’t be looming in the background, stealing your attention away from other things. Perhaps most importantly, it won’t be contributing to your anxiety. Once you accomplish the biggest item on your list, you’ll feel confident that you can handle anything else that’s in store for you.
- Focus on one thing at a time.
Some people pride themselves on being fantastic multi-taskers, but I would venture to say that there is no such thing. Not only does multi-tasking provoke anxiety, but it’s also ineffective! Whenever you try to do more than one thing at a time, you’re dividing your attention and energy, making it impossible to do either task well. Trust me, multi-tasking is not the way to move through your to-do list and it’s certainly not how to deal with stress.
- Cut out what’s unnecessary.
Are you a people-pleaser? Do you base your self-worth on how many things you can get done in a 24-hour period? If so, then you are your worst enemy when it comes to how to deal with stress! Let these false beliefs go, and focus on what actually has to be done. If it is not necessary and it doesn’t bring you joy, then stop wasting your time on it. Have the courage to say no, and you’ll be better equipped to beat depression and anxiety.
Can you imagine what it would feel like to calmly go about your day with the confidence that you’ll have ample time to do everything that needs to be done to the best of your ability? How good would that feel? I’d be willing to bet that by conquering time management, you’ll also learn how to deal with stress more effectively. Without the distraction of constant stress, you’ll be in a better position to embrace and enjoy the things in life that bring you joy.