Labels: Sounds simple but taking 5 seconds to label a folder or put a sticky note on a pile of paper clipped papers will save you an enormous amount of searching. We would all like to say that we have everything in organized folders but we all have that one folder or pile deemed our “to do” or “Works in process”. This area usually contains the things most pertinent to the projects we are currently working on even if they don’t all belong together, typically the only thing separating them is a paperclip. Take a few seconds when you add something to that pile to put a sticky note on the top with no more than 5 words describing what it is, “Dawson Contract,” “Research for Johnson on Lawyers”
Color: Your office doesn’t have to look like Crayola headquarters for using color to have a professional benefit. Use different color folders to separate types of files. For example use Red folders for closed deals, seeing the red folder will indicate you can stop working on it. Use Yellow for deals in the closing process, perhaps you’re still waiting for a few signatures. The yellow will indicate that while it’s almost complete there are still some details to be done. Use green folders for new projects or deals. This will indicate that you need to be working on getting these projects out there. Also seeing more green folders than red or yellow will encourage you to work to close more deals.
Reduce: Reduce the amount of things out in your workspace, I’m not saying family photos have to go, but anything that isn’t top priority or possibly distracting needs to be removed. Look around if there is something on your desk you don’t need like old reports, notes from meetings 4 weeks ago file them away. Not only will it make you more organized it will reduce your stress because you’re in a less overwhelming environment.
Time: While most people would agree watching a clock makes the day feel like it’s going by slower, many others would agree having a grasp on time keeps you on schedule. Knowing how much time you have to finish big tasks will reduce the time wasted off task.
Breathe: Simple but effective. We all get so caught up with schedules and deadlines we often don’t take time to breathe. If you’re feeling overwhelmed just step back from your desk and clear your head for a few moments this way you can get back on task with a clear and calmer mind.