“I feel so overwhelmed!” Can you relate to this statement?
In this article, you’re going to learn three tips to master and overcome feeling overwhelmed, and stay in charge of you. These tips are important because feeling overwhelmed can cause you a lot of anxiety, as well as compromise your productivity.
The theme of being overwhelmed is one that comes up frequently in my conversations with high achieving individuals like you. Perhaps you’re already earning six figures and you’re striving for the next promotion or aspire to be a leader that others want to follow. Whatever your specific situation, if you’re feeling overwhelmed you’re likely juggling multiple commitments that may also include family, household and other demands. And chances are you find yourself in a state of being overwhelmed periodically or maybe everyday.
What Is Overwhelm?
First, it’s good to understand what exactly overwhelm is.
What’s happening is, your conscious mind is focusing on too many things at one time. This can easily happen when you consider that in any given day you are sifting through a high volume of emails for work, attending meetings and professional commitments where you’ve got to be prepared, possibly checking your social media accounts throughout the day, as well as fitting your other commitments like family into your day. When you add all that up, it’s a lot of information that you are processing throughout the day. Your mind can’t function optimally when it’s sorting through all that minutiae. No wonder you’re overwhelmed!
If you keep reading, you’ll learn three tips to help you manage and stay out of overwhelm.
Tip #1 Write Everything Down
Write everything down… and I do mean everything! Remember, one of the causes of feeling overwhelmed, is that your mind is trying to process too much at once. My first tip for you is to get the information out of your mind and onto paper or another storage system. I personally have a little notebook, and I use a page a day. So today’s page has today’s date. When ideas come to me, I jot them down. It’s a safe repository. I know my ideas are safe there. But the important thing is, I’ve cleared the ideas out of my mind and put them somewhere else.
Tip #2 Be Very Clear About Your Goals
You need to be very clear about your goals. Identify your top professional goal and your top personal goal. This is important because, your daily activities and priorities should be aligned with your goals.
Science fiction writer Robert Heinlein said, “In the absence of clearly defined goals we become strangely loyal to performing daily trivia, until we ultimately become enslaved by it.”
Reflect this statement back to yourself. Are you consumed by daily trivia or are you focused on activities and priorities that are aligned with your goals? Often in our daily lives there’s a lot of “to do” related to managing your work and also your household. But how much of that is really necessary or can be delegatedsomeone else?
Earlier I mentioned my small notebook where I write my ideas. Additionally, every evening, I write out 6 goal achieving actions to take tomorrow that are aligned with my goals, and I make sure these are in my calendar. And I also make a list of my “to do’s” and block time for that in my calendar.
If you were going on a trip, would you set out in five directions at the same time? No, you focus on one direction, that’s why it’s really important to make sure your activities are aligned with your goals. This tip can help you focus and eliminate the feeling of being overwhelmed.
Tip #3 Prioritize Your Self Care
It’s vital to make your self-care a priority. When you’re high-achieving individual, it’s so easy to put projects, family and other priorities ahead of your self-care. But to help manage your overwhelm, you must take excellent care of yourself. This means prioritizing nutrition, sleep and exercise, and giving yourself some down time and “thinking” time to recharge. Something I do for myself is to start and end every day with “Me time,” time when I invest in myself. I highly recommend this for you. Every morning, I review my goals, my priorities and activities, exercise, visualize and meditate. This helps me to stay calm, focused and aligned with my purpose and focused on what’s most important in the day ahead.
Using the trip analogy from above, if you were going on a trip, you wouldn’t neglect to put fuel in your car. And the same applies to you – to prepare for your day mentally, physically and spiritually, you’ve got to put premium fuel into you!
Imagine a Life with More Ease and Flow
When you learn to work in harmony with the way your mind works best, and you are very clear about your goals and priorities, you will open yourself to welcoming more ease and flow into your life. You can learn to master and overcome feeling overwhelmed, and it starts with making the decision!
And if you’d like to learn more about the power of your mind and how to stay in charge of you, please be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel Stephanie Hessler Live.
Stephanie Hessler is a Mindset and Performance Coach. She helps high-achieving corporate leaders and business owners who are playing too small to rapidly advance their careers and create a vision others want to follow, without sacrificing the lives they dream of. Previously, she worked in the investment business for sixteen years, including at Merrill Lynch (now Bank of America) and Northern Trust Company. Stephanie is a graduate of Wellesley College and earned her MBA from The Wharton School.