If life isn’t exhausting enough, this week we lost an hour. Is it just me or does that mere sixty minute loss throw everyone for a loop? According to the news, there’s a 24% spike in heart attacks and a 17% jump in car accidents the day after the time change. It’s as though everyone is simultaneously hit with mini-jetlag without the benefit of the vacation to precede it.
So what can you do if you were already feeling overwhelmed and need a few quick fix ideas to get back on track?
1. Put it down.
No really, put it down. All of the things you are trying to keep track of in your mind drain your energy and focus. Write down your mental to-do list so that you can free your mind to focus on what you are working on now. Your list can be on paper or if you prefer electronic, just check your app store for one that could work for you.
2. Identify your top three overarching priorities / goals.
This one can be challenging. If you’re like me, you can easily rattle off a dozen priorities. Scale them back, boil them down. Pray for clarity. Identify three. Just three. I’ve reduced mine to health (physical, emotional, spiritual), relationships (family and friends), and lastly my ministry (writing and speaking). Each week, look at your to-do list and identify which of your three priorities/goals the task accomplishes. When possible, do those items that impact one of those three first. This will allow you to gain meaningful momentum in the areas that are most important to you.
3. Restructure your time.
Ask yourself when are you most productive? Then creatively look at your schedule to see how you can rearrange your time allowing you to focusing during that more-productive window of time. For example, if you’re a morning person and one of your primary goals is physical health, yet despite your great intentions you just can’t seem to push yourself to the gym after work, free up your morning routine and schedule your gym time then. For me, I am a morning person and I write my best in the morning. I’ve rearranged my morning to save writing blocks that are helping me get my next book project done.
4. Leave breadcrumbs for tomorrow.
This is one of my personal favorite productivity hacks. I leave myself a beginning for the next day. When I write, I start the next paragraph or next chapter before I turn off my computer. It gives me a place to grab hold of to keep going. If I want to do my laundry first thing in the morning, I might sort my clothes and set them in front of the washing machine before I go to bed. Starting from “something” is easier than starting with a blank page. Leave yourself breadcrumbs of what you want to do making it easier to make progress with your next effort.
5. Say no.
Despite our superhero attempts, we’re not wonder woman or superman. Yet, how many times do we agree to take on one more thing when we were already beyond our limits? Sometimes the best thing we can do for ourselves, and those around us is say no, not this time, or not right now.
Resist the urge to conquer the world today. Life isn’t a sprint it’s a marathon. And, marathons are run by putting one foot in front of the other over and over again. Focus on what’s in front of you, plan for what’s ahead, and don’t forget to enjoy the journey!
Enjoy what you’ve read? Why not share it with one of the social media icons? Maybe one of your friends is feeling overwhelmed and this is just what they need. Be blessed! And your comments are always welcome.
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