How Many Hats Have You Worn Today?

If you feel as though you’re expected to be multiple different people during the day and fill many different roles, you’re not alone. Most of us wear many different hats in our lives and it is a real challenge to our time management. Learning to wear only one at a time can greatly increase our efficiency and decrease our stress in three ways.

1. Easier to Focus

When people become overwhelmed with work, they commonly report feeling pulled in many different directions at once. When you try to be too many things at once, you can’t focus on any of them. You can be an accountant, and a salesperson, and a trainer, and a webmaster, and a student, and an athlete BUT you can’t be all of those things at the same time.  When you put on one hat at the beginning of the day, try to finish as many of those responsibilities at once before removing that hat and putting on another one. This isn’t always feasible in a fast-paced work environment, but the more you can try to organize your time based on the roles you play, the less scattered and more focused you’ll feel.

2. Maximize “The Zone”

“In the Zone,” “In the Groove,” “In Flow”…No matter what you call it, being on a productivity streak feels really good. We’re so engaged and focused, we hardly notice that time is even passing at all. This state of focus is great for motivation and productivity, but it’s hard to achieve when we’re jumping back and forth between tasks haphazardly. Sticking with one role as long as you can before switching to another helps maximize your chances of getting into a productivity zone and fending off Time Killers.

 3. Remove the Blur

Wearing one hat at a time can be particularly helpful in removing the blur between your work life and your personal life. Separating those two worlds can be difficult, especially if you frequently work from home. However, this can quickly lead to a feeling of burnout when your work invades every corner of your life and you have no place to escape. When you take your work hat off and put your “family and friends” hat on, leave it that way.  Enjoy a meal without griping about your schedule. Enjoy a Saturday afternoon without worrying about the stack of work awaiting you on Monday. If you don’t own a “relaxation” hat, get one.

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