Be More Effective – Week 24: Avoid Fire Fights


Have you heard someone say before: “I do my best work when I’m under pressure with tight timelines”? I call BS on that, it’s just a sign of bad time management, poor planning and lack of discipline.

Don’t wait to the last-minute. Plan ahead. Finish your tasks as soon as possible.

While waiting to the last-minute increases the pressure on you and will help you to stop procrastinating, it is also immensely stressful. Especially if any additional unplanned but urgent work gets added on top.

Work under pressure is not your best work, even if you might think so because you have trained yourself over the years to only take last-minute work serious.

Rather take control. Plan out your work and try to get it done as early as possible. That allows you to do the work when you actually have time. It will also avoid, that you might end up in a situation where two urgent tasks (one known, the other one unexpected) will have the same deadline.

Getting on tasks early increases your degrees of freedom and greatly reduces your stress levels. All it takes is a little planning ahead and some discipline.

Skip the fire fights, rather train your muscle for discipline. Like any other ability or trait, discipline is just a habit that can be learned, trained and strengthened.

Avoid the stress of last-minute and the mistakes and extra cleanup work of rushed deliverables. Get ahead of your tasks and priorities.

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