If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen in some of my recent posts that I’m currently juggling about 35-40 meetings a week at work. 

Yep, that’s about 8 meetings a day on average, or well over 100 meetings a month.

I’m just wrapping up my fifth week at my new job and the load has been pretty heavy so far. I’m learning a lot of new information, meeting new colleagues, and responding to some urgent requests related to academic continuity in response to COVID-19 concerns.

I’m actually enjoying the work quite a bit, but my days have gotten really full, and I don’t have a lot of margin. I’ve had to make some decisions about what I’m prioritizing and what I can let slide a little. 

Workouts, journaling, food prep, Friday date nights with my partner, 8 hours of sleep, and fun reading are all established routines that I depend on each week to stay healthy, get solitude time, and connect with my partner. Here are some of the other things, however, that I’m backburnering (at least for now):

Being super responsive on email. I’ve found that it’s really hard to stay on top of email when I’m in meetings where I have to take a lot of notes, listen carefully to keep up with the topic at hand, and contribute my own ideas. I’ve been leaving work at 5pm each day and I try to answer all work emails before I leave the office, but sometimes emails are getting responded to in 1–2 days rather than my usual 1–2 hours. My inbox zero policy is also being stretched a little to accommodate the longer response times. Since my evenings are reserved for coach training and coaching clients, this is also true for side-business-related emails since I want to make sure I get to bed on time for my daily 5am wake up call. 

Developing new business products. Quite a few people have asked when I might have a Notion course or other offering available since I’ve been diving deep into that platform for my own project and task management. While I’d love to create something that could help others explore the platform, I know I need to be spending my nights and weekends just keeping the basic elements of the side business up and running. So, for now, I’m focused on things like the blog, my podcasts, my coach training participants, and my individual and group coaching clients — and that means I can’t add any new creative projects to my plate.

Cleaning my house. A five bedroom, three bathroom house takes some time to clean and, unfortunately, that’s time I don’t have. This is kind of an easy one to delegate since I didn’t do much cleaning before changing jobs and instead chose to outsource this set of tasks. We’re still looking for a house cleaning service in our area and I think it will be worth every penny if I don’t have to worry about regular cleaning maintenance on top of everything else on my plate.

Watching television. Other than my weekly Friday date night with my partner, which sometimes includes some Netflix or a movie from Disney+, I’m basically watching zero television during the week or on weekends. I’d rather be reading something fun, getting some rest, or talking with my partner, so keeping up with the latest shows and movies has been really de-prioritized for me in this busier period. A fun side benefit is that my partner has been telling me the story lines of what he’s watching and sometimes it’s a whole lot more fun (and efficient) to hear it from him.

When things get busy, it helps me to keep my priorities clear and I’m proud that I’m keeping up with morning pages, workouts, and other routines that really contribute to my mental and physical health and wellness. 

What do you prioritize or backburner when your life is busy?