As an educator, working out which hours can be allocated to engaging with parents, planning your lessons, managing school events, and (let’s not forget) empowering your students can be incredibly stressful without a set plan.
Here are our top six tips to managing your priorities at work:
UNDERSTAND WHAT YOUR PRIORITIES ARE
It’s time to accept that there are only so many hours in the day. So, start by identifying the urgent tasks on your to-do list and put them front and centre. To set yourself up for success, write out your game plan either in the morning or in the evening before you go to bed.
Bonus Tip: Tackle the biggest things on your list first. Completing and crossing off a big task releases serotonin, creates a sense of achievement and motivates you to power through the rest of your day more productively.
PRACTICE SELF-AWARENESS AND HONESTY
When creating your daily list of priorities, be honest with yourself about what is achievable. It’s always good to set challenges for yourself. However, setting unrealistic goals will only lead to disappointment, which will negatively impact your productivity.
As we know, life has a funny way of presenting you with more than you bargained for sometimes. This means you need to leave some wiggle room for when unexpected circumstances intrude on your routine. When a situation arises, assess its urgency and fit it into your list accordingly.
KNOW WHEN TO LET GO
Perfectionists, we are talking to you. It can be challenging to move on from a project you just can’t seem to get the way you wanted in the time you wanted - but hey, that’s life! Note that it is taking time away from other assignments that may cause you stress later due to lost time, and decide whether it’s worthwhile to remain fixed on this task, or whether it’s time to move on.
OUTSOURCE WHERE POSSIBLE
This is where you get to practice your teamwork skills. By collaborating with your colleagues to alleviate an overflowing workload, you can match different tasks to different people’s strengths and not only will you be a more efficient team, but people will be working on things they enjoy.
Mindfulness, on top of relieving stress, allows for more efficient work all together when used in a daily setting. It doesn’t always require a formal meditation. Simply, be aware of your thoughts when focusing on your work. Every time your mind drifts to a personal issue you’re facing, or a piece of school politics pops up into your head, acknowledge the thought, and then push it to the side for later. This will give you the clear mindset you need to fully focus on the task at hand.
Mindful Listening is another great one for the workplace. Try listening to your colleagues with your full attention and be mindful not to cut them off or finish their sentences.