All Women's Talk

8 Ways to Leave Work Early ...

By Jordin

Ways to Leave Work Early can certainly come in handy if you want to sneak out of the office before you're supposed to. Of course none of us ever PLAN to leave work late-it just happens that way. But did you know that with a little planning ahead and a bit of effort on your part, you can leave work early? Yes, you heard me right! And you can do it without slacking on your work load! All you need is to follow these awesome, full proof ways to leave work early and pretty soon it will become a habit. You'll get everything on your to-do list of the day crossed off in record time and all your co-workers will be wondering how you did it! Overtime is a thing of the past- it's time to focus on these 8 ways to leave work early!

1 Show up on Time

This is actually the number one way to leave work early! By showing up late you are already creating a domino effect of running behind on all your tasks for the day before you even walk into the office. We all have mornings that go bad, days that we oversleep or those horrible times to miss the bus. But make it your goal to make those days few and far between! It's worth getting out of bed a few minutes earlier to make it to work on time if you get to leave the office early and enjoy your evening, right?

2 Stay Organized

Don't you just hate losing 20 minutes of your time trying to find lost spread-sheets, schedules and calendars you need? Not to mention 5 minutes here or there looking for post-its, Sharpies or your calculator. The best way to nip this little problem in the bud is by staying organized. Designate one drawer in your desk for supplies you may need throughout the day, and keep all your memos, important files and paper sorted and organized in a filing cabinet. If you don't have a filing cabinet at your disposal, use a drawer in your office space to create a mini one with plastic dividers. This will help you stay on track and stay on time!

3 Set Your Priorities Straight

One of the best ways to leave work early is by setting your priorities straight. By this, I mean checking of the biggest, most important task on your to-do list as early in the morning as you can. This way, you're not stuck at the office till late trying to tie up loose ends on a project. Procrastination is a huge time sucker and you've got to stop it right away! The relief and energy you will get by tackling your biggest project first will give you a big boost for the rest of the day!

4 Prepare

It's always a good idea to show up for a meeting or presentation by being ready for it. But you need to really prepare! Be polite and courteous, but skip the chit-chat and cut right to the point. If you want to be taken serious, you have to be serious. Besides, the more time you spend over small, talk, the longer you will be in there. Say what you need to say and get on your way. There's no need to waste your precious time AND other people's time while you're at it!

5 Beware of Time Stealers

Time stealers-avoiding them is one of the best ways to leave work early! By time stealers, I mean anything that nibbles in on your time and chips away at it. Could be a chatty co-worker, your BFF ringing you up at lunch to gossip about your high school reunion last week or your afternoon run to the drugstore because you forgot to bring tampons with you. Be polite and nice, but make sure to be firm when you tell anyone who's wasting your time that you are on a deadline and you'll have to chat later. And don't forget tampons if you're expecting Mother Nature!

6 Figure out Where Your Lost Time Goes

Yes, we all have lost time, and it drains away almost unnoticeably. But it's time for you to start noticing! With an office job, it's almost impossible to swear off all internet. But logging on to look at every single thing will slash out up to an hour or more of your time in small intervals throughout the day. Checking your email every 30 minutes is another culprit. Allot yourself to checking email every two hours, and monitor your time spent online. Also, make sure that you don't spend more time than necessary in the copy room or the ladies' room.

7 Follow THIS Rule

One way to leave work early is by using the 80-20 rule. It's an easy rule to follow. It simply means that only 20% of your work needs to be 100% perfect. The other 80% can be acceptable. Of course, you should always want to do your best, but many times, we spend so much time going over and "perfecting" already perfect presentations or projects and obsessing over them needlessly. So stop losing that time over nothing! When you have a task completed and you know it's good, leave it alone and focus on something else.

8 Plan on Leaving Early

How many of you can agree that when you have a deadline, you work harder to reach it? Well, it's time to give yourself a deadline! You should aim to leave work 30 minutes earlier than what you leave now. That way, you'll be crunching to make it happen. And if you need a little nudge to get out the door by your self-appointed deadline, make plans with a friend or make an appointment to be somewhere. If you follow this pattern for a few weeks, pretty soon it will be habit and you will be leaving work early every time!

Once you get these ways to leave work early down pat, you will be strolling out of the office and enjoying your evening dinner before your co-workers can figure out what happened! Is YOUR work day filled with these little hindrances and time-suckers? If so, use these ways to leave work early to get out of that rut and use your time saved to relax and renew! You'll find that you can enjoy work much more when you don't have to worry about staying late! What other ways to leave work early do you employ?

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