Chances are if you are in a position where you think you are stretching yourself too thin and there is a good chance you may be. Not overextending yourself can be a delicate balance for hard workers who like to take on extra projects at work, side gigs, or volunteer opportunities. Those who have been there though know that can you stress yourself too thin your quality of work for all of the things you’re doing diminishes, and it is at that time that you have to take a step back reprioritize, delegate, or rethink your tasks at hand.
This can be very hard for people who like to stay busy or work on several projects at the same time because often to them admitting that they’ve stretch themselves too thin is like admitting failure. The actuality is if you’re able to self-diagnose the fact that you are being stretched too thin you will leave yourself to less failure overall because you’ll be able to put more hard work and dedication towards the areas that you have deemed most important. You must also consider weather the tasks that are stretching you out too thin are in fact worth your while. Sure you may be making an extra little bit of money each month what is the time lost with friends and loved ones worth that money to you? These are things you must consider when deciding whether or not you are in fact stretched too thin.
There are many different ways you can determine if you stretch yourself too thin and here are just a few signs that it may be time for you to reprioritize. Delegating tasks to other people or for going a side gig is not a sign of failure. Such changes to your lifestyle do not need to be permanent, they may just be until other areas of your life free up, be complete other tasks and projects at work or you find that you should change gears to make sure that you were able to include a passion that you may have to the break from.
You are missing out on important opportunities in your work-life or personal life
If you find yourself constantly missing out on events in your personal life such as kids recitals family reunions or nights out with friends due to prior commitments either work-related, side gig related or volunteer related there may be a chance that you are stretching your self too thin. While it is important to keep job or your volunteer work, it is also important to stay present in the lives of your family and friends. You must also remember that your side gig or volunteer work should not interfere with your ability to do your primary job to the best of your ability. If you show up at your primary job tired after a late night of working your second job this can interfere with your ability to do your best work which could jeopardize future promotions or other opportunities in the workplace.
You never truly feel caught up or relaxed
It is true that some people thrive on being constantly busy, however giving your brain the opportunity to rest every now and then is also vital to your health and your sanity. If everyday you sit down to dinner or go to bed thinking about all the things you still have to do, and never get a break from it it will be detrimental to your health and your quality of work. You won’t be able to get as good of rest as you would otherwise. If you never have the chance to put your work aside and take time to do the things you love or the things you need to do in your everyday life then you are stretched too thin and have to take some time to reprioritize to make sure that you were able to relax and get everything done that needs to be done.
Your quality of work is diminishing
If you regularly have a good quality of work, but you start to notice it diminishing after you take on an extra project, work a second part-time job, or spend too much time volunteering, chances are you need to reel it in a little and not spend as much time doing your outside of work activities. And it doesn’t even just have to be work, if you start taking classes in the evenings or join a sports team that uses up a lot of your time and affects your work you are probably stretching yourself too thin. You can dial it back to fewer nights a week, or consider changing your job to be part-time.
You no longer feel passion towards the things that initially led you spread yourself too thin
Those people who are passionate about certain Hobbies or activities often thank that they would like to do more of them. But often times even the things you love most start to feel like a chore if you do them too often or find that they are interfering with other priorities in your life such as your job, your social life, or even just standard household chores and necessities. There’s a good chance you start to lose the passion for these things when you can’t dedicate the proper time to them, or you feel like you don’t have a chance to relax ever because you were spending so much time on them. They may have once been a relaxing but once you are stretched too thin you lose that effect.
Once you’ve determined you stretch yourself too thin, do take the time to decide how you would like to move forward. Figure out your priorities and what you have to do to get them and perhaps rearrange your schedule to allow you to do all things, or take a break from something for a little while. Sometimes even just a week or two off can help you to readjust and let you go back to your previous schedule without actually feeling overexerted.