My last post talked about prioritizing and getting your to do list done when you are feeling overworked, overwhelmed, drained, etc. Well, I have felt all of those in the last two months. Having a combination of personal and family situations, as well as coming down with a cold that seemed to never go away and finally manifested as pneumonia, was a kick in the stomach.
While I tried to tackle my list and follow my own directions of at least accomplishing one thing at a time, things still fell to the wayside. I had to cancel work events I planned on going to, skip out of a few engagements with friends, take 5 weeks off of my physical training and scratch myself from two running races. I barely posted anything on my company social media pages and didn't write the blog last week I had planned to. I had to say goodbye to a family member I had not been as close to recently as I could have been. All of these missed opportunities for business and personal experiences had me feeling that I was squandering the things I had worked hard for.
Then I picked up a Dove chocolate bite that said "Keep life moving forward, looking backward is only for time travelers." And it made sense. There wasn't anything I could do about the missed events or downtime from working out. All I could do was appreciate knowing my body and mind has limits. Know that I gave as much of myself to my family when they needed me as I could, and know that I can continue do those things going forward.
So that's my message for you. Don't harp on the things that you may not have done yesterday, the to-do tasks you didn't check off, the emails you didn't answer, the conversation you should or could have had with that friend or family member. For me personally, doing anything more would have dragged out my sickness and made me even less valuable to family, clients and myself as time went on. Just do what you can, be proud of it, and do better tomorrow. And if you need help with your home or business tasks, give me a call, I am feeling much better these days!
Sometimes the universe is funny, I believe. I thought about writing this blog on the topics feeling overwhelmed with an ever-growing to-do list a few weeks ago after a conversation with a friend. Then I read a Thrive article with a great quote last week, while personally struggling with and recovering from three weeks of sickness that turned into walking pneumonia. And finally, a colleague reached out to me recently to ask if I could assist her in time and priority management, just as I had finished writing my thoughts down. So here are my Tuesday tips for tackling these feelings and your to-do list effectively to regain your balance.
We as humans all get overwhelmed in lives. Whether it’s due to returning from a vacation or time off, entering a particularly busy quarter at work, or personal and family issues, everyone gets to their threshold at some point. However, you can’t just curl into a ball and hide in your pillow fort, you still need to get your work done, care for your family and attend to your own mental and physical health. I have found that the key to getting through that feeling of being overwhelmed is not to focus on the list or tasks as a whole, but to address each one on its own.
Each day, chose one thing to focus on. Do that to the best of your ability. When that is completed, feel proud and productive in your success on that task. Then, chose another task and continue as you check off the items on your list. At some point, you will begin tackling two or even three tasks in a day and get back your mojo back again. Whether that is two days, a week, a few months, or a year depends on your situation. But you can do it, if you set yourself up for success, not failure. There is nothing that will stress you out and overwhelm you more than putting things off and continuing to have that growing list staring at you.
“If you seek tranquility, do less. Or (more accurately) do what’s essential. Do less, better. Because most of what we do or say is not essential.” - Marcus Aurelius.
So start today, do the essential items -well - not half assed and quickly to check them off, and continue from there. Let me know how it goes and how your path back to equilibrium goes.