If you’re consistently over-stretched, you’re doing it wrong. And if you’re not doing it wrong, your organisation is.
If you are too busy, why? What are you and your team in pursuit of? If you are too busy because of pressure imposed by someone else, why do they believe they should be able to ask more of you?
Are you too busy because the business has expectations for you to deliver by a certain date regardless of the capacity of your team (who are delivering high quality work and always working on the next most important thing as prioritised by the business)? Then that is a conversation that you need to have with your boss and your stakeholders. That is likely unreasonable.
You and your team should never be so busy that you can’t do your job properly or that you begin to hate your work. Especially if you’re a leader or a leader-of-leaders, then you should actually (yes you should, I’ll die on this hill) have free time to think alone, and to talk and ideate organically with peers. Contrary to popular belief: back-to-back meetings isn’t a badge of honour, it’s a red flag.
Image: DALL-E 2