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The Balancing Act

By Kathy Paauw
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5. Increase productivity by planning your week and fine-tuning your workday. Block out time to handle priorities. Important tips to remember as you plan your week:

Have unscheduled time in your calendar for handling unexpected but important tasks.

Plan to work on creative activities during the time of day when you are at your best.

Schedule "protected time" to work on projects that need your undivided attention. If interruptions are eating you alive, close your door and ask that people come back to see you at a designated time.

Temporarily turn off the audio feature on your cell phone, pager and email account. Pick and choose when you respond and when it's appropriate to let calls go into voice mail.

Be realistic about your expectations. Don't set yourself up for failure by planning too much in one day.

Leave work at a reasonable hour so you have time for those other three areas of your life - self-care, family, and service to others.

6. Reduce your stress by being underwhelmed. Here are a few tips to help you avoid getting overwhelmed:

NO is a complete sentence. Don't bite off more than you can chew. When someone makes a request, buy some time before answering. Say, "Let me think about it," or "I'm in the middle of something right now. I'll call you back and let you know." This will give you time to evaluate the situation and decide if it's something you truly want to do.

Delegate as much as you can. Focus your time on activities that you enjoy and are best at.

 
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