Self-Management Strategies

“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning and focused effort” - Paul J. Meyer.

Mastering self management is a pivotal habit which can help to alleviate the pressure of one’s mental health. According to a UK-wide stress survey conducted by the Mental Health Foundation, it found that almost three quarters of adults (74%) “have at some point over the past year (2018) felt so stressed they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope”. The causes of stress are multifactorial and may be a result of biological, psychological or social factors; this article will be setting a focus upon work-related stress and the different ways in which self-management strategies, based upon time management, are utilised to succumb this.


How prevalent is work-related stress?


According to the Labour Force Survey (HSE report), 44 percent of workers experience stress, depression or anxiety as a result of workload. Workload alludes to tight deadlines, too much responsibility or pressure. By occupation, professional public service industries (such as healthcare workers; teaching professionals and public service professionals) show higher levels of stress as compared to other industries. The prevalence rate for work related stress in 2017/18 was 1,800 per 100,000 workers.


Relevance of a self-management strategy


Self management is the driving force for setting up a successful day which facilitates continuous organization and execution. It is highly recommended that one should take the time to develop the self-management methodology which is best suited to their own lifestyle, in order to achieve better efficiency and fulfillment of targets.


Methodology Number 1. Daily Goal.


Notes and checklists of daily to-do duties.

Some people adapt to a “one task per day principle” in order to spread out duties evenly.


Methodology Number 2. Strict timing.


Taking a step to orchestrate calendars and appointment times.

A binary is made between the mandatory daily duties and the non-important activities. Allocating a suitable time block is then performed in order to fulfill the task.


Methodology Number 3.Outcome-focused.


Instead of scheduling to-do duties; predestined outcomes are planned and allocated throughout the week. These outcomes are then paired with a matched activity. This is a goal-oriented methodology.


Methodology Number 4. Four Quadrants.


The four quadrant rule is based upon the ability to make a distinction between important and urgent matters and their relevant importance. It is then highly advised to prioritise the activities in Quadrant 2 which aid towards long term development, setting a limitation upon Quadrant 1 to avoid burnout and avoiding Quadrant 3 and 4 which serve as distractions.


  • Quadrant 1 Urgent/Important - Deadline projects. Crisis.

  • Quadrant 2 Not Urgent/Important - Personal growth plan. Investment. Opportunities. Creativity.

  • Quadrant 3 Urgent/Not Important - Interruptions. Matters based on the urgency and priority of others.

  • Quadrant 4 Not Urgent/Not Important - Trivia. Time wasters. Busy work.


Additional measures to strengthening your self-management is feeling less guilty for saying “no”, delegating tasks to your support system and developing a personal vision statement which helps to align all of your to-do duties into cohesion.


Self management is a habit which needs to be exercised; thus it does not always feel fun during the initial steps but the long-term benefits regarding health and sociological benefits are essential. In addition; if you are experiencing high workload stress; it is essential to allocate rest periods for when they are necessary and additional help if required.


On a final note, keep pushing!


Written By Jade Okene


Mental Health Foundation. (2019). Mental health statistics: stress. [online] Available at: https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/statistics/mental-health-statistics-stress [Accessed 20 Apr. 2019].


Hse.gov.uk. (2019). [online] Available at: http://www.hse.gov.uk/statistics/causdis/stress.pdf [Accessed 20 Apr. 2019].


Covey, S. (n.d.). The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.




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