Do you ever have a day where it seems you are being drowned in “to-do’s, must do’s and other never ending obligations? If you’re not paying attention, this is what we have done that can lead us to being burned out, depressed and overwhelmed?
Today’s business demands more than ever, but there are ways to help us avoid these feelings of powerlessness, despair and just plain exhaustion!
A good coach can help us to change our thinking and our behavior when we deal with chronic overwhelm. Super life coach Sandy Newman offers these insights to help us beat the overwhelm syndrome:
- Plan to fail or fail to plan?
- As Michael Gerber brilliantly stated in his book, “The E-Myth”, most entrepreneurs fail to reach their goals because they often work too hard in their business and neglect investing time on working “on” their business. Sales people perform more efficiently and profitably by investing some quiet time alone every day to study how they can grow their business and not jump right in to the “working” part of their business. The best way to accomplish this task is to block out regular time increments to be alone to get centered and ready for the day. This activity will give you the time to prioritize the money making activities and separate those actions that don’t return money for the time invested. If you think you don’t have 15 minutes a day to do this you are already overwhelmed! Remember you need to take care of yourself first or nothing else will work in your life.
- Make a list of everything you want to do and then rate each item by priority of importance and address the high priority items first. Know that there will be several items on your list that may not get done. Instead of making yourself crazy trying to get all the items completed, simply review, reschedule or delegate these tasks to others and stay on target. Having incomplete tasks hanging over your head leads to feelings of overwhelm. Do them, delegate them or dump them!
- Don’t allow other people intrude on time you have allocated for your projects. Be firm but pleasant about your boundaries. Explain to them that this is time you have scheduled for a specific project and that you are happy to schedule their need at another time and do it. Remember, they are pushing THEIR agenda, and don’t really care about yours! So often we just say YES to avoid confrontation! This is a great place to gently put up your boundaries and to put yourself and your priorities first!
- Assign a designated time and or date to help systematize those activities that must be done on a regular basis. Use technology to help you stay organized. Calendar programs have built in scheduling features to “remind” you of appointments, and other deliverables. When you can easily see the time is blocked for a specific activity, you are more likely not to squander the time doing “busy” work or double booking yourself. People will respect your schedule when you do.
- Start with getting some quick and minor annoyances on your list done first. This will give you a sense of moving forward and help keep you motivated to move on down the list.
- Reward yourself when you get a boatload of those “to-do’s” done! It can be as simple as taking a short break to savor your favorite coffee out of the office, taking a short walk or a simply enjoying a “time out” to read for a few minutes. In order to avoid burn out, you must reward yourself for the efforts that have moved you forward.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff! Understand that most people do the best they can in the moment. To get the right perspective, ask yourself this question: “Will this matter a year from now? In most cases, it won’t matter or even be remembered! Look for the good in everything and focus on keeping a positive outlook.
- Stay physically healthy and well rested. No one can work at optimum pace when they are tired and not in tip top shape. Take care of you first and the rest will follow
- More often than not, everything doesn’t happen in the exact time frame we would prefer, so you might as well make peace with it and accept that it is “okay”! Develop a little patience and understand that some things just may take a bit more time!
- Don’t rush! Rushing can make you feel anxious. Be kind to yourself and schedule to leave ten minutes earlier than you normally would to take the pressure off. Anticipating being late can lead to feelings of overwhelm and despair!
And the best advice?
The best piece of advice Coach Sandy gives about feeling overwhelmed is this: When dealing with feeling overwhelmed, learn to laugh at yourself!! When you become really dramatic about something that is happening to you take a step back and put it in perspective. Soap operas are good day time TV but as a life style they can really wear you out. If you look, you can find the humor in just about everything.
And more importantly, laughing takes the “seriousness” out of overwhelm and puts you in touch with a more positive feeling. By following these steps, you can begin choosing to what you want to give your precious energy and attention to, and begin living life with your own agenda! You’ll be better equipped to resist trying to do it all!
Coach Sandy Newman is a professional and personal business coach. You can reach her by email: RARCON@aol.com.
Bio: Terri Murphy is a communication consultant, speaker, and a published author of 5 books, including her latest with Donald Trump. She is the founder of WomensWisdomNetwork.info, Pres. of Terri Murphy Communications and serves as CIO of U. S. Learning in Memphis. Email: Terri@TerriMurphy.com – And for more info visit: www.TerriMurphy.com