A Juggling Act: 5 Ways to Master Multitasking

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The ability to tackle several projects at once is a skill many people strive to master. There are books, seminars and extensive classes that train the average person on how to accomplish more through multi-tasking. You don’t have to be an expert to learn how to manage your time and abilities. By adding some of these tips to your daily routines, you can start working towards accomplishing more in any given day.

Here are five ways to master multitasking:

1. Prioritize.

Not everything is critical. Once you realize this, you can put first things first. The most important items should be done first or sometimes the tasks that will require the longest amount of time to finish. These important tasks should be given your full attention, which means you may need to work on them at the beginning of the day or at the end. You know how alert you are depending on the time of day so plan accordingly.

2. Delegating.

A truly productive person understands they are unable to complete everything on their own. Delegating means less of assigning tasks and more of relinquishing control. Have you ever noticed a strong leader doesn’t need to control every little thing, as long as the task is completed with excellence? When you are able to delegate certain tasks, you’ll get more done and you can even devote your time and energy to more important things.

3. Focus.

Avoid distractions. Turn off your phone, put a sign on your office door, let your team know you are busy for the time being. Don’t always say you’re busy but keep your warning for the times when you are truly busy and need to give a task your undivided attention.

4. List.

Start your day or your work time with a list. Make notes of everything you need to do; no task is too small to list. By creating this list, you are giving your brain permission to forget about this item and make room for something else. As soon as you write something down, you are more likely to plan to finish it and you can also see if two or more tasks are able to be combined. This will save time in the long run.

5. Track.

The biggest complaint you’ll hear in the nursing world is “there’s not enough time.” This might be in the hospital while filling out charts, this might be completing advanced education, or this could even be fitting in all the patients that need to be seen. Tracking your time can be one of the most eye-opening experiences you’ll have when you’re learning to be more efficient. Set an hourly timer and become aware of the hours passing. You might find you spend more time goofing on than you thought or maybe you take too long on a task that could be delegated. You won’t know unless you track.

Multitasking is important as a nurse, but try not to confuse excellent care with the number of people you serve. You might need to focus on one patient or simply move quickly to have several patients seen in a short period of time. Prioritize the situation and work accordingly.

For help with this balancing act, download the Nurse Backpack app to help you stay organized while tracking all your professional credentials and personal information. If you’re looking for a way to streamline your career, give the app a try today.