Overwhelm is the feeling that everything is just too much, that feeling that we will never get everything done, that there are too many things in the to-do list at the end of the day and that we don’t have the time or the ability to do anything about it.
Left unattended overwhelm can led to levels of negative self-talk which take us to the point of simply giving up. It can affect our emotional state and even our physical health.
That’s why we need to have a strategy to get on top of it.
Here are six things you need to know and work on in order to overcome overwhelm.
1. It’s normal.
Remember that overwhelm is perfectly normal
We have lots of competing interests and pressures on a day to day basis so overwhelm will happen.
Knowing it’s normal helps because it shows that we are not alone in the situation and that if others experience and overcome it then we can too.
Once you recognize it’s normal then the following five steps will help to resolve it.
Here are the next five steps:
2. We have accepted that overwhelm is normal. It’s normal in business and in everyday life. One thing we can do is to take a day out.
If you don’t think you can cope with a whole or even a half-day out then at least find something which is your “happy place” and schedule some time there.
Perhaps it’s a round of golf, a movie or some time with friends or family. I recently took a day out to spend with my grandchildren.
The following day my thinking was far clearer, my productivity increased, I was more creative and overall happier.
Whatever the day point or happy place may be for you, the trick is to schedule it.
Lock it into your calendar so you can be sure it happens.
There is one layer peeled.
3. Get back in touch with your “Why”.
It may be the Why you started your business or “Why” you have the job you have.
The “why” may be your big-picture goal, your vision or it may simply be the next “reward’ you are working toward.
Whatever it may be, the trick here is to remind yourself of it.
If you are struggling to remember your “why” ask those around you, your family, friends, team members or clients.
Think about the impact that what you do has on others, the transformation that it brings to their lives and to yours.
Understanding your “why” may just be the shot in the arm you need to motivate you to push on and peel another layer off that overwhelm onion.
We all know the saying that a failure to plan is a plan to fail.
Plans, in my mind, shouldn’t be complicated, they should be simple and even better if you can put them on to one or two pages.
Having a plan will give you the two important C’s, certainty and clarity. With a plan you know exactly where you want to go and precisely how you’ll get there.
Taking some dedicated time out to plan will save a lot of hard work over time. You will get certainty and clarity.
5. Break things down.
Any task or project which contributes to overwhelm can and should be broken down to bite-size chunks.
Looking at a large project or problem as a whole only contributes to the overwhelm. breaking it into achievable pieces works to remove the overwhelm.
By seeing the component parts to any project, we may also see where those parts can be completed by someone else, potentially someone who would be better and faster than us.
Is that another layer of the overwhelm onion I hear hitting the floor?
6. Find some tools to help
In Mastermind, we have our One Page Plan and our Sprint Planners. These are simple one-page tools that help implement the other steps in the process.
The one-page plan is simple, it just makes to look at your “why” your big-picture vision, then work out what you want to achieve in the next twelve months which will fit in with that vision.
Next, once you have the twelve-month goals clear, set up some projects which you can achieve in the next 90 days which once completed will step you closer to your twelve-month goals.
Complete that all on one page and you have addressed the major parts of this overwhelm removal process.
Following these six steps will help you peel the necessary layers from your overwhelm and help you to move forward with clarity, energy, creativity and most importantly, confidence.
Links and Resources:
Mark Creedon – Business Coach to some of Australia’s leading entrepreneurs
Some of our favourite quotes from the show:
“Today’s demanding work environment and technology keeps you hooked into work twenty-four seven.” – Michael Yardney
“We all know our mental health affects our physical health, doesn’t it?” – Michael Yardney
“If you want to get above and beyond everybody else, if you want your business to grow further, if you want to be more successful in your career, you actually are going to have to do more than others.” –Michael Yardney
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