So you recognize that you are overloaded, but what can you do about it?
There are things you can do to balance your available time and the work you are expected to do. There are some key words in that last sentence. Your AVAILABLE time and your EXPECTED workload. Many Product Owners think they have 40 hours in a week, but once you remove time for your regular meetings, what time do you really have available? You probably also pick up the slack from others. You spend your time following up when others should have just done their job and you step in to get things done when someone else drops the ball. Sound familiar?
Here are a few suggestions by the experts to balance your time and workload.
Reduce your demands
Identify the things you should stop doing or delegate to others.
- What are you doing that others should do?
- What are you doing that someone else could do?
- What are you doing that is redundant or not needed?
Increase Your Resources
Tools can and should make your life easier. If there is an application or product that can make you more efficient, then it is worth the investment. If you talk faster than you type, then dictate or record yourself rather than typing messages or memos.
Organize Your Schedule
Schedule time to prep before big meetings. Add in buffers so you are not booked all hours of the day especially at the start and end. Above all keep your family and break time sacred, do not allow work to encroach on your ‘Me Time’
Did you know that the number one reason people procrastinate is that they are afraid of failure? Our instinct is to avoid things are painful or difficult, so if we think we may fail at something our flight instinct kicks in. This leads to procrastation. Unfortunately, most tasks we procrastinate only get worse as time passes. Make it a habit to tackle the hard stuff head on!
Stop Suffering in Silence
Everyone occasionally feels overwhelmed by expectations, responsibilities, and a lack of time. In a world of people obsessed with putting their best self forward, it’s easy to feel as through everyone else is going through the same things you are. That does not mean you should suffer in silence.
Remember there are people in your life who want you succeed and even others that count on you for their success. These are the people you should keep informed. They are your support system. Each time you are feeling overwhelmed, you should let them know. They would probably love to help and if they simply cannot, at least you know they are rooting for you.