How To Overcome Task Paralysis?

We all know that feeling of having to do so much that we end up doing nothing at all. We feel paralyzed by the amount of things that need to be completed. In this article we delve deeper into how to overcome task paralysis.

What creates task paralysis?

Task paralysis is usually formed by any of these three circumstances:

  • You have too much to-do’s on your to-do list, which creates a feeling of being overwhelmed;
  • You have unclear to-do’s on your list, which aren’t really to-do’s at all;
  • You haven’t prioritized your to-do’s correctly, preventing you from moving forward.

How To Deal With Too Much To-Do’s On Your To-Do List

How much is on your to-do list? Is there a way you can batch similar tasks with each other? If you batch tasks for which you need to write content, it’s best to do them all at once. It’s faster to switch between tasks that are similar, instead of switching tasks that require you to think and act in a different way. If you have several tasks that have the same theme, batch them to save time. You will see that this helps you reduce that long to-do list.

Also ask yourself how much of the to-do’s do you need to do today? Is it really necessary to complete them today, or at all? Take of your to-do list what is not necessary. Don’t let your to-do list be filled by unimportant tasks.

How To Get Rid of Unclear To-Do’s

Are there any to-do’s that aren’t really to-do’s at all? Take a look at each item on your to-do list and ask yourself what you need to do about this to-do. Can you take action? Do you need to think about the next steps further?

Overwhelm can be reduced by dividing your to-do’s into subtasks. “Preparing a presentation for the management board” is not just one single to-do, it’s made up of several subtasks, like getting the data for the presentation, creating graphs and pie charts, placing the data in the presentation and so on.

Get clear on what you want to do. This helps enormously when it comes to dealing with overwhelm.

How To Fix Broken Priorities

Sometimes it occurs that you plan to work on a task,  but you have a large meeting in the afternoon. How much do you think you can get done? It is best to work on large projects when you have large blocks of time available. Several small meetings can really break up your day. The time you have available wouldn’t be sufficient to get your larger tasks done. So you end up doing only small tasks, which might not always be your number one priority.

So aligning your priorities with you schedule is key here. You don’t want to complete lots of to-do’s on a day in which you have several meetings. It just won’t work.

Coping With Task Paralysis

Task paralysis can be overcome. You just need to prioritize more often and check your to-do list regularly. Sometimes it is required that you take a look at your to-do list and be honest with yourself: do you really need to do all of these things?

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