I had been feeling very overwhelmed for a long long time and I am really tired of it.
I wondered how I have gotten myself into such an overwhelming predicament – after all, I am a smart woman. But then I realized that is one of the main sources of the problem.
- I am really good at generating ideas – lots of “great” ideas.
- I am really good at what I do. As a result, I get asked to do it more and more often and I get asked to teach what I know to more and more people.
- If I don’t know how to do something I set out to learn how to do it and do it well. This generates more things on my to-do list and more ideas.
All those ideas all take the time to implement. And all those requests for help add up.
Now right now you are probably thinking…
“You need to get better at saying no.”
Would you believe that I had already gotten pretty good at that? Yeah, I didn’t think so. I am doing better, but still need to improve more in that area.
I had been trying to be very careful about what I choose to invest my time in and only work on those things that are in line with certain core values and that are keeping in line with my life’s mission. But that’s not enough. I realized I need to weigh additional criteria.
What I failed to do was to say yes to only those things that provide an “adequate return” on my investment of time and resources. I was getting bogged down in smaller details. That failure was hurting me, it was hurting my business, and it was hurting my relationships.
So I went to work developing a new set of criteria that I will now use to weigh any new projects I take on against.
- I am taking my knowledge, the knowledge that people keep asking me to share with them, and develop that knowledge into “renewable resources” that others can use to achieve the same results. Then I can refer people to those resources.
- I will develop a team of people who can do what I have been trying to do on my own.
- And finally, I will honor my time and use it in a method that better serves my family, as well as my clients.
With my new “outlook” does that mean I am going to say yes to only those things that provide a “high return” for me personally? No. I’ll always do my share of volunteer work. And my core mission is to help other achieve richer and fuller lives. But what that does mean is that I am going to do more teaching and connecting- rather than handling much of the details myself. I am going to move more into the consulting and teaching role and spend less time working on the details. I’m going to put my time and resources into making sure I have a profitable, sustainable growth plan.
And I am going to make sure I continually reflect (weekly) on my key activities and make sure they are in sync with my core values and my long-term plans. And reflect longer on any new projects before committing myself (mentally) to it.
I try to reflect quite often about my life and how the decisions I have made an impact in my life.
I do that because…
Regular Personal Reflection is a Key Tool for Getting Out of Overwhelm
- Do you take the time to reflect on what is serving you and not serving you in your life?
- Are you weighing you projects against criteria that really serves you?
- What can you do to create get more authentic results out of your time?
- What criteria do you use to decide if a project is right for you?