Categories: Discussion

Multitasking Skills and Tips to Get You Through Your Day

When you’re self-employed, you might find you’re lacking in some multitasking skills that could help your day move a lot more smoothly.

Maybe you seem to jump from one task to another to another without ever completely finishing the first job you started! At the end of the day, you feel like you accomplished so much, but your To-Do List is still full of the same things you started out with.

When you’re running a home business by yourself, you have to wear a lot of different hats, but you don’t want to try to wear them all at once or you’re going to run yourself ragged and drop from frustration, exasperation and exhaustion.

For example, some of the hats I have to wear during the day are:

Blogger Copywriter Web designer Email responder Advertiser Marketer Wife! Light housekeeper Receptionist (UGH) Cook (only rarely)

Fortunately, my husband and I get a cleaning crew in the house about once every other month (it’s just the two of us here and a dog, and we’re pretty clean people), so my housecleaning tasks don’t amount to much beyond picking up after myself, doing the laundry and loading/unloading the dishwasher.

And once in a while, one of us will run the vacuum or broom.

But if you have to add those housekeeping hats to your collection, you could get absolutely frantic in no time if your priorities aren’t written down. Me personally, I’m not a good “multitasker” by any shade of the imagination.

I have to do one thing at a time, and get it done before I start on something else. If I don’t, I won’t get anything done – or things I might get done, aren’t done correctly.

In my much younger days, I could multitask like there was no tomorrow; drove my bosses crazy! But now? I can hardly stand it when my husband interrupts me because I’m afraid I’ll lose my train of thought and forget where I was.

So when I sit down to do a project or task, I have to stick with it until it’s either at an easy breaking off point or until it’s completely done.

Whether you’re like me or you just need to put your multitasking skills to better use, here are some tips that may help you get more accomplished throughout the day.

Organization!
Make your To-Do List in order of priority. For example, if you have a client project due in a few hours and you get a phone call, let your voicemail pick up the call and don’t check Facebook or email until that project is done.

Do you have a lot of clients? Keep a good filing system, either computerized or physically in a drawer, so you can find their contact information or invoice information quickly.

Nothing wastes more time than not knowing where anything is.

Make a Schedule.
Part of organization is having some type of a schedule on hand. It may not be etched in stone, but having an allotted amount of time set aside for your different projects will help keep you sane.

Do Your “Busy Work” Last.
These are the non-essential tasks like cleaning up your desk, filing – if you still use an offline file folder system, checking off things on your To-Do List and making a new one for the next day, and lastly, checking and responding to non-essential emails or phone calls and logging on to Facebook.

Be Consistent.
If you make a practice of setting up a To-Do List at the end of every day and following it the next day, eventually it’ll become a habit, and it may not even feel like you’re trying to multitask at all.

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