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>> No. 29968 Anonymous
25th August 2020
Tuesday 10:34 pm
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I'm having trouble at work because I can't seem to focus which leads to a backlog that only builds up making it worse. Tasks that are "do this by 2" are fine but larger projects requiring creativity have become challenging. Any tips on restoring and managing executive function?

The obvious solution is to take holiday so middle of next month I'm off for two weeks but what can I do to focus and survive until then?
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>> No. 29969 Anonymous
25th August 2020
Tuesday 10:42 pm
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It sounds like you need a bit of structure. Sit down, maybe with a colleague if needed, and get a bit of a plan in place. Doesn't have to be fancy with brilliant time estimates. Could just be some scribbles in a note book. But something to give you a rough idea of the shape of the project and what bits might depend on other bits.

In the software development world, something like Trello (free) is popular as a way of making little cards for things like this with columns to show status. (Until you decide it doesn't have enough features and you move to something else).
>> No. 29970 Anonymous
25th August 2020
Tuesday 10:43 pm
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May I ask, without too many specifics, what kind of work do you do?

I have felt the same this year, as have many others I know. Definitely recommend taking a break - I am in the middle of my first two week holiday this year (!) and already feel about a hundred times better. I think a lot of people who have been working from home the past five months have also been putting the hours in and going very hard, and burnout is a real issue, as is general mental health on not seeing people in person. It is very difficult to be creative when you're in this space.

Talk to the people around you, particularly if you're under pressure - many of us are in the same boat.
>> No. 29972 Anonymous
25th August 2020
Tuesday 11:02 pm
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You're right, there's definitely an improvement if I can sit down and go through exactly what I need to do.

We have a similar system at work for task management but I ended up resenting the idea that others can see what I'm doing. It feels quite unnatural for me where usually I like jumping through tasks as and when.

Creative stuff where I'm part translating reams of information into packages. Yeah, I was thinking back when I was writing OP that I really haven't taken any time off since Christmas because options are quite limited at the moment besides doing nothing.

There was and idea to use the bank holiday to get away and see an old mate but it looks the usual engineering works is going on. Maybe I will try and relax with a new game.
>> No. 29973 Anonymous
25th August 2020
Tuesday 11:04 pm
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>besides doing nothing

But that's the important part - I have spent the past week dodging the rain and doing DIY around the house, reading, and mostly only using this computer and not the one that is about 1 metre to the left and hooked up to the work VPN - doing nothing is good. Games are good. Don't feel guilty about doing nothing, that is the literal definition of taking a break.

On the work and prioritisation stuff, I recommend a system called Getting Things Done - I don't use it all the time like a madman, but I do fall back on it when I get stressed or task-overloaded as you have described; there are other systems, but that one works for me - it's a book by David Allen and is used/taught by a lot of companies. It begins with a great big braindump, and I find that part very soothing when it all gets too much.

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