Tuesday, February 27, 2018

How To Prepare For A High Stress Week

With my lack of posts last week, I don’t think I did the best job of preparing for a high stress week ahead of time especially since I went from vacation mode before heading back to work. Usually, I tend to do a better job of prepare for weeks that I know are going to be more overwhelming ahead of time. In college, I felt like somehow my tests and projects would all fall in the same week leaving me with some high stress weeks before weeks with a more manageable amount of work. I’ve always enjoyed working ahead since I know I can be overwhelmed when I have a lot of important things due all at once. Since I am sure I’m not the only one who has felt this way, I thought it would be helpful to share some tips I have for better preparing yourself when one of those overwhelming weeks does come your way.



Do What You Can Ahead of Time
You probably wouldn’t be reading this post if you didn’t care about getting ahead and being well prepared for your high stress weeks. By keeping an agenda and knowing when these times are approaching you can start to knock things off your to-do list in advance to make those stressful weeks less overwhelming. Small assignments that could be done in advance are a great thing to try to get out of the way. For me, that was usually some sort of reflection for one of my education classes although it could easily be other assignments as well.

Start Your Week with a Clean Room
I am most productive when my space is orderly. Coming home after a long day to finally get in bed and realize that my room is a mess adds to me feeling overwhelmed. Because of that, I like to make sure that pretty much every week I go to bed on Sunday night with a clean room. If anything, it makes me feel in control of that aspect of my week. To make sure that my space stays this way throughout the week I spend a few minutes before getting in bed ensuring that everything is in its place.

Get to Work (or the library or class) 5 Minutes Earlier
One of the hardest parts of busy weeks for me is the fact that oftentimes I don’t feel in control of everything I need to be balancing. That lack of control can be part of the reason I get stressed. Making sure I’m where I need to be earlier than I actually need to be there allows me to feel productive. By getting somewhere and knowing you have a certain amount of time to get something done motivates me. Arriving early and tackling a quick task before trying to accomplish something else helps you to feel more productive and in turn continues to motivate you when working through other tasks.

Put Your Phone On Airplane Mode
We’ve all heard this trick before, but it’s not until you start to utilize it that you see just how much time you can spend mindlessly on your phone. If you’re looking to get a lot done and need to eliminate distractions this is the best thing to do. Sometimes even putting it out of sight on airplane mode can tempt you even less!

Say No
I am not so great about this, but when you know you have a lot on your plate coming up try to eliminate saying yes to additional things. As fun as these activities may be or seem, they could end up adding unnecessary pressure. Knowing how to say no is something that takes practice but as long as you are doing it with the right intention, hopefully it won’t hurt anyone’s feelings and will lessen your load as well.

Go to Sleep at a Reasonable Hour (even if you didn’t get it all done)

There comes a point in time where you have to realize that you just might not get it all done. While I can’t say I usually feel ok about that, I know that I work better in the morning and that by going to bed and ensuring that at least I’m semi rested then hopefully I can get through the rest of my list the following morning. The less rest you have, the more overwhelming other things are going to feel, counteracting your attempts at feeling prepared.

I would love any other tips you may have to help better prepare for those inevitably crazy weeks. I will say, I am thankful that this week is much more normal and that I get to go home without having class or a meeting after school today. Usually those are the days when I am most productive, and who knows, maybe I'll start preparing for my next crazy week today!

6 comments :

  1. This is super helpful, thank you, Dorothy! I think prepping beforehand and doing things in advance when you have a bit of spare time is the key. 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

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  2. Thank you for the advice. The last things, go to sleep at reasonable hour is what I need to most now.
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  5. These tips are great, Dorothy! My semester has been crazy so these will definitely help in terms of productivity!

    xoxo,
    Katie
    chicincarolina.blogspot.com 

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