April 5

Here’s a reliable principle of work life: expectations consistently rise. New projects are added on top of existing ones, new systems are put in place, and new meetings are added (which then generate even more work!). Often, you are asked to take on more work than you are capable of managing at a given time. This is normal. However, when this trend continues over time, it can feel suffocating and frustrating. You are challenged without the corresponding level of stability necessary to help you perform. You may lack the resources, clarity, or systems needed to succeed.

When this happens, it’s tempting to grow angry and direct that ire at your manager. However, I’d encourage you to seek what you need instead:

Ask for more resources (budget, help, clarity,time).[1]

Explain why the existing process isn’t working well, and offer to help fix it.

Ask to reprioritize your existing work so that you can tackle the new, urgent work.

Assess where you feel stretched beyond your capacity, and seek a peer’s perspective.

Don’t allow your frustration to boil over. Ask for what you need.

Always make certain you have the support structure to facilitate your level of creative challenge.

Is there any place in your work where you are not getting the clarity or resources you need to meet your expectations? How can you seek what you need?

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