I am a busy man! Well at least I am fond of saying that. I do, however, keep myself busy. At any given moment, I have a lot going on. I would rather not get into listing all of the activities I am involved in, but let's just say that as a community activist and radio show host who is regularly in the news, people find you with things for you to do. And, I wouldn't have it any other way.
Still, I have learned over the years that you have to protect your sanity when you deal with the public. One way to do that is to not overload yourself with work or assignments. I have several ways of doing that. Today, I will share three of them with you.
The first one is the one that took me the longest to learn and is probably the most powerful. I had to learn to just say no! Now that is not so easy when one of the things you do is head a civil rights organization. Often, the people who come to you are doing so because they have some high stress issue or tragedy. You just can't turn your back in certain situations. However, that still leaves a lot of less than critical causes that you can say,"Sorry, I just don't have the time." You can also suggest that so-and-so might be better able to help you. So technique number one in saving time is to not get involved in the first place.
Technique number two is one of my favorites. I have a lot of mail, paper work and files. You can quickly get overwhelmed with so much paper flying around. I have what I call my "special folder." It is called the shredder! Yes, most paper is worthy of the garbage can so just shred away! You can even have a shredding party if you like. But the point is you need to get rid of as much of it as you can. Then you can- in no time- handle the important matters. The easiest way to decide what to ditch is simply to look at it. If you have to think about it, shred! If you make a mistake, that is ok because most items of importance will have follow up mail coming anyway.
Finally, I like to write out my to-do list. You should start your busy day by writing down what you need to get done. Take a look at the list and find things that you don't have to do at all. It may actually be somebody else's job or something that can be delegated. Next cross off things that you really don't have to do at all. If it is something that will not impact on your goals or well being, why is it on your list in the first place?
Those are just a few things that help me maintain my sanity in a fast paced and unforgiving world. Of course there are many others but the best thing you can do for yourself is recognize you need to manage your time or circumstances will mis-manage it.