Today is August 1st and on-campus recruiting is in full swing. For my law firm recruiting colleagues who have now entered their busiest seasons, and for anyone who feels like there is more work than hours in the day, I have a few suggestions on How to Take Care of You during peak work times. The goal of these tips is for you to manage your energy so you can have the focus you need!
- Start the day knowing what you need to focus on, no matter how many distractions and emergences arise. I do this every morning by writing my intentions for the day. By starting the busiest days with focus and clarity, I find myself better able to reset after work interruptions occur. For example, if I know that my intention is to write this piece for the Wisnik Weekly, I return to writing after dealing with each unexpected client or candidate call, and no, I no longer wait to write until after 6pm when the phones finally stop ringing,
- My newest ritual is surrendering and trusting that the universe has my back when I am in situations that I have no control over. Boy, is this hard for a self-proclaimed, Type-A Control Freak! I have found that even on the best of days, something that I have no control over will happen by lunchtime. In January, I committed to surrendering and trusting once I know that I have done everything I can to help a client or candidate, rather than getting frustrated when others don’t do what I think they should. For example, if we prepped a candidate before an interview and they still were not able to articulate how they could be of value to the Firm during an interview, I have to accept that this candidate was not going to be a good fit and trust that a better candidate will appear. Of course this is common sense, but how often do we let our emotions take over rather than move on?
- Do the Worst Things First! This has been my mantra for years, but it is particularly helpful during the most hectic times! I find that if I come to work and get one major thing off my plate early in the day, it sets the tone for the rest of the day. It makes me feel like I have already accomplished something big and I feel energized and able to do more. A “major thing” doesn’t always mean something time consuming. For example: telling a candidate that after five rounds of interviews they are not getting the job. The “worst things” are often more about how much energy something will take, rather than how much time it will need.
- Have you ever found that when you are super busy and have too many things to do, you easily distract yourself? I know that when I am trying to put the finishing touches on an important client email, all of a sudden the thought pops into my mind that I should order FreshDirect! I urge you to STOP interrupting yourself and create focus time. These days it is hard to block out more than 20 minutes of concentration time, but if you do and you don’t interrupt yourself, I promise that you will get important stuff done!
- My last tip is by far the hardest and also the most important! When I have back-to-back calls and meetings, it can be challenging to stay present. When I turn off my screen during calls so that I am not distracted by newly arriving emails, I hear things on another level and am truly able to help and do the work I love! Seriously, when we are fully present we do our best work and make others feel heard and seen.
I hope these tips are helpful when you are in the midst of your busiest work times. I suggest that you pick one that resonated with you and incorporate it into your day!