Have you ever been so overwhelmed in your private practice that it completely took over your day? In this episode, Gordon gives helpful tools and resources to beat the overwhelm and take control of your day. In particular, Gordon utilizes self-care, his daily planner, and the getting things done philosophies.
Focus on the things that matter most in your life, and don’t lose sight of that. Self-care is essential for therapists and counselors because it allows us to recharge and be fully present for our clients. If we have not been taking advantage of self-care for the week, we may face the dangers of burnout. Gordon mentions how he practices self-care by finding time to help out his family and taking hikes.
Breaking Things Down
Gordon has to remind himself to focus on his time management skills continually. He is not a naturally organized person, and he has to regroup now and then. By regrouping daily instead of weekly it makes it easier to find things. Have a system in place, so you know what is most important and what is least important. In some cases, you may have to stop what you are doing entirely and tend to those things, like family emergencies. Gordon points out sometimes we assign jobs as “urgent” even if they are not urgent, just important. Marking everything as urgent will lead to severe burnout. The other quadrants are urgent but not important and not important, not urgent. Gordon points out that social media can be a time waster and often results in doing mindless stuff.
Take Time To Plan Your Day
Gordon currently uses a planner each morning to figure out how he will spend his day. He recommends using a pencil and pen planner because it forces us to slow down and focus on our day. Gordon uses the full-focus planner, spending that type of money on a planner encourages him to use it. Plus, it has time management and productivity tools built into the planner. The goals you write down should be tied down to the weekly goals, which in turn are tied into your big-picture goals. This concept made sense to Gordon. Focus on a few things at a time daily; the whole purpose of the planner is to track what we are doing.
Navigating Our Inboxes
If you can do something in 2 minutes or less, and it is not going to take a lot of energy, then do it as soon as possible. Once you have done that, trash it or archive it. Another thing you can do with your inbox is delegating it to someone else. For instance, Gordon forwards things to his administrative assistant all the time – she handles all of his appointment requests. Whereas, projects are things that are going to take more time, put them in your calendar. A lot of times, we do not schedule tasks that take some time to do. With this podcast, Gordon delegates Friday morning to send it to his virtual assistant. Another thing that comes into our inbox are things that may be a reference for later. Gordon stores those using Evernote. Overall, the getting things done inbox philosophy includes these five steps:
1. If it can be done in 2 minutes or less, do it immediately.
2. Trash it or delete it.
3. Delegate things by handing it off to somebody else.
4. Assign it to a project by using your calendar.
5. References are things you want to save for later.
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Gordon is the person behind The Practice of Therapy Podcast & Blog. He is also President and Founder of Kingsport Counseling Associates, PLLC. He is a therapist, consultant, business mentor, trainer, and writer. PLEASE Subscribe to The Practice of Therapy Podcast on iTunes, Stitcher and Google Play. Follow us on Twitter @therapistlearn and Pinterest “Like” us on Facebook