We’ve all experienced it. Everyone seems to be clamoring for our attention. We have too much to do and not enough time to do it. Our brains feel like we are on overload. We feel out of control and when we lose control in one area, the rest of life can feel like it is falling apart, too. We feel anxious and those around us react to our “bad mood.” Where does it end? But there are ways you can calm the overwhelm monster. These are some of my own tricks I’ve found helpful to stay on track.
1. First of all, decide what is urgent and what is important. President Dwight D. Eisenhower said, “What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.” What is the difference? Urgent task need immediate attention. Important tasks contribute to long-term goals. I’ve created my own “Eisenhower box” to help explain what I mean.
2. Ask yourself The big “Why?” Why am I doing this? Does it serve a purpose? Does it energize me? Does this truly matter that I do it? If it doesn’t matter, let it go.
3. Use a big calendar or a day planner. Use color pens. Or, if you prefer to use your phone, copy phone numbers, addresses, and directions underneath each thing “to do” so you have it in one place. Saves a lot of time, energy and stress. I keep two calendars – a planner and a steno pad. The planner is my master list. But the steno pad stays on my desk. I put all my appointments for the week in the left column, and then list all the other things I would like to accomplish on the right. I like the paper visual in front of me as I look at it numerous times a day. And then I check it off!
4. Which leads to the next step – create a Done list. Check off everything you accomplished in either column. And a bonus tip: if you do something else and it isn’t on the list – add it in and check it off. You will be amazed at how much you actually accomplish in a day, a week, a month – and when you look at the list, a year. That’s the benefit of a visual.
5. Set appointments with yourself. Remember, your time to exercise, read, refresh your soul is just as important as anything else. Set that appointment time and keep it. YOU are important, too!
6. Keep a notebook by the side of your bed. If those 2AM thoughts come creeping in – write them down then let them go. You can rest easily knowing you won’t forget about them as you’ve written them down and can look at them the next day.
Donna Internicola ~ Internicola Coaching ~ Envision Possibility®