Time Management for the Techies (Part 2)
Remember to have a read at part 1 if you haven't!
Firstly, congratulations on getting your priorities listed down and knowing what you can really do with every hour of your day! To recap, here’s the link to set your priorities and time allocation.
I hope you like animals, especially the ELEPHANTS in the room, namely:
- Have I been procrastinating?
- Am I able to handle this workload?
- Do I agree to unrealistic timelines?
For simplicity’s sake, let’s distil these things down to MOTIVATION AND PRIDE.
Procrastination tends to be related to the misalignment of your MOTIVATION.
No matter how committed you are to something, if you don’t know WHY you’re doing it, you’ll never put your heart into it or want to do it. Sheer willpower alone will most likely lead you to completion, but surely not fulfilment and satisfaction. Disclaimer: not all work is fulfilling. However, if it is aligned to your goals and values, I believe that you’ll see value in work, despite the challenging task(s) at hand.
If you’re catching yourself procrastinating, ask yourself these questions:
- Why am I doing this, and is it something that does something for me in the grand scheme of things?
- How is this work making me feel?
- What do I think will be the outcome after I am done with this piece of work?
By taking the time to ask yourself these questions, you are taking yourself out of the rut you’re currently in and looking at things from a third-person perspective. So, get your head in the game and align yourself with why you’re doing this in the first place! If you’re genuinely tired, take a break and get refreshed for the next round of challenges. After all, we’re only human!
<sourcecode> PRIDE = <spoken> “I can do it! Don’t worry!” // <openfile> “I bit off more than I can chew.exe”
Taking pride in your work means that you’re proud to put your name on it! However, that same pride also makes us feel that we can do it all. Why? Because I’m awesome!
Gleeful boasting and ego-stroking aside, the truth is that I took on a bit more because I may have overestimated my ability and underestimated the effort required for completion. There are a few things to prevent this from happening.
- Self-awareness – knowing my strengths and weaknesses. Do I have what it takes to do this?
- Resource allocation – Have there been past projects that had a similar scope? How much time and resources were allocated compared to what I have now?
- Time allocation – Am I given the right amount of time to complete this?
Here are a few tips that can help you out if you’re a little overwhelmed:
- Talk to someone! - Having someone hear your out, regardless of whether they’re in the same industry or not, could give you more perspective
- Ask a colleague for help – nothing wrong with getting a friendly assist! That’s why you’ve got a team around you!
- Inform your team lead of the current challenges and seek support - There is no need to apologize for taking on too much, as this is also information for your team lead to analyze. In addition, this is an opportunity to have coaching from a more experienced member of your organization!
Every day someone is facing these challenges. If you’re able to overcome your challenges, lend a hand to others if you can by hearing out where they’re having issues with work delivery and what’s bothering them. Working remotely does not mean that you’re alone. It just means that we need a set of different tools to connect with others!
Keep moving forward!