When Getting Sick Isn’t In Your Schedule

Time Management when sickThis week I decided it would be a good time to get sick. I carefully planned for it in my schedule so that no plans would be disrupted and everything would still be accomplished….

Right. Because that happens. Sick never comes at a time that would be “convenient,” it happens right in the middle of a hectic day when you just don’t need one more thing to go wrong. Here are three tips to deal with your to-do list when your health just isn’t happening.

1. Pick What You Won’t Do

When we get sick we have to accept that try as we might, we simply won’t be able to do everything we hoped for. We then have a choice. We can pick which tasks we will let go so we can focus on having energy to do the important ones, or we can allow the illness to decide for us.

I made the mistake of trying to do everything starting with the first appointment on my calendar, even though the events later in the day were more important. By 3:00, the illness decided I was done being productive. Oh how I wish I had rested in the morning so I would have had a tiny bit of energy for later.

2. Ask For Help

We never want to be “that person” that is a burden on our colleagues, but I assure you, unless you’re calling out every week, your co-workers would rather pick up a tiny bit of extra slack for you than have you come in and contaminate the whole work space.

Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for help when you need it. Have you ever said “no” to a sick colleague? Exactly.

3. Acknowledge it Early

Sometimes we try to ignore sickness and “power through it” hoping if we don’t acknowledge the obvious, it will somehow go away. Recognize the early signs of sickness and start taking better care of yourself right away.

We like to think that we can wish away a cold or a stomach bug by simply never taking our nose away from the grindstone, but it’s far better to take a step back now than be stuck in bed later.

Connect with The Time Diet for more time management tips


Time Management for College SurvivalGraduation is around the corner! For a limited time, sign up for my online class “Time Management for College Survival” for 20% off. Either purchase for yourself, or purchase for your favorite student. Lifetime access to 9 lecture, helpful worksheets, and advice that WORKS. Use this link and enter code “TIMEDIET20” at checkout. This is only for the first 20 people and only for a limited time so sign up today!

No Time for the Flu

Sick Time ManagementIt seems like everyone in the world is either sick or just getting over being sick. There’s no doubt, getting sick can throw a huge monkey wrench in your time management plans. While at first it may seem like you’ll never recover from your productivity setback, consider the following:

1. Life will go on without you for a moment

Have you ever seen your coworkers trudging through work, coughing and shivering, trying to make a presentation between sneezes, and thought, “Why in the world are they here?” It’s easy to think that life will stop if you don’t make it into work, but in reality, everyone will probably be just fine for a day or two. Your coworkers will gladly help pick up the slack for you in exchange for keeping your virus to yourself! Of course, there will be times when your presence truly is required, but see if that can be taken care of with a Skype call from home.

2. Eliminate what’s unessential

It’s amazing how quickly we’re able to eliminate non-essential tasks from our lists when we get sick. It’s as though we get tunnel vision for only the most important things. Since you have limited energy when you’re sick, look for tasks on your list that others will have difficulty helping you with, and do those first.

3. Enjoy a little time doing absolutely nothing

It’s tempting to sit in bed and worry about all of the tasks you’re leaving undone. Instead, try to embrace the feeling of doing absolutely nothing. If you’re on the go constantly, you probably rarely afford yourself the opportunity to do nothing except when sickness requires it. Since you can do very little about your situation other than rest, making yourself feel guilty does nothing. Even though you feel under the weather, take pleasure in the fact that you are going to take it easy, even if it’s only for a few hours.

Do you remember when you were young and took every sneeze as a hopeful sign that a day home from school was in your future? It’s amazing how fast we change. Instead of focusing all of your energy on work, allow the people in your life to take care of you for a day while you focus on recovering.

Connect with The Time Diet and receive weekly blog and event updates  

Stuck in bed sick? Why not order some new reading material?

Check out The Time Diet: Digestible Time Management  Popular Time Management Book

Photo Credit: Freedigitalphotos.net