Do you ever feel paralyzed with your ever-growing to-do list brewing in your mind? Feel like there’s not enough time in the day to finish everything? And you can feel you stress level increasing by the second?
Me too! And I hated these moments. So, instead of tackling them, I used to try to walk it off, ignore it or try to work on my tasks. Are you surprised that these tactics failed?
I’ve been trying hard to overcome these moments to make my day more productive and found that acknowledging that I’m overwhelmed is the best first step. Yes, this seems cheesy and I didn’t buy it at first either, but this simple acknowledgement magically triggers the next action, which makes it worthwhile.
Next I started writing my to-do list. The list may not make perfect sense but prioritize on writing the specific actions, starting with a verb. This is a simple trick I learned from David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” and it actually helps!
For instance, if you have to update your website with new content, don’t write “website update,” try instead “update website with new blog content and publish.”
It has two benefits — the tasks are specific enough so that you can start right away, instead of thinking about what “website update” I was referring to when I wrote my to-do list this morning. In addition, that verb puts you in the right frame of mind, kicking your ass into gear when the next item is up.
Sounds simple right? It really helped me to tackle my anxiety and stress — what do you do when you feel overwhelmed? Please share!
Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash