Imagine, you wake up, open your laptop, and see over 10,000 emails. How do you feel? Either you think you’ve hit the jackpot, and those social media ads have finally landed, or you feel like you never should have taken that “no tech vacay” during busy season. Or maybe you’re somewhere in between.
With the world falling down around us in addition to the standard pressures of life, kids, family, and self-care, it is no wonder more and more individuals are reporting feelings of anxiety and overwhelm.
To keep this blog from adding to the overwhelm, I want to share with you a couple things I do with my own clients to break up and overcome these kinds of feelings.
Reach for the Sky
This is a simple exercise where you take a deep breath as you raise your arms out to the sides and up to the sky. Hold at the top for about five seconds, then exhale and slowly bring your arms down. See if you can inhale for a count of eight, hold for five, and exhale for a count of ten. Then check in. How do you feel?
I have recommended this one before, but here’s a refresher just in case. Go to your desktop, and take all those files cluttering up your view and put them somewhere. I don’t care where, just anywhere other than right there in your line of sight. If right now you are asking, “Bunny, are you talking about my physical desktop or my electronic one?” the answer is yes. Both need to be cleared.
While I know it would be better to tackle those piles head-on and file them for good, right now we are just looking for sanity, as quickly as possible.
Make a TTL
A “Tough Task List” is a great thing to have handy. If you can, take on one tough task before 11 a.m. each day. Doing so will add momentum to your day and give you at least one thing about which you can feel accomplished, peaceful, and successful as you hit that pillow at night.
Restricting this list to be just the tough tasks, though, is key. Do not let all the little stuff distract you from the big stuff (example: this blog was on my TTL).
A little perspective and goodwill can go a long way to feeling more grounded and less overwhelmed. My grandfather used to say, “I cried because I had no shoes, until I saw a man with no feet.” Gruesome a saying as that was to share with a young child, it definitely illustrated the message. We all have a lot to be thankful for and feel blessed about. Focusing on those things can give an enormous amount of perspective when we feel like we have too much going on.
Remember, most of us are feeling overwhelmed right now. Sharing tools and resources helps. These small activities and choices can have a big impact on sanity and overwhelm. Use them yourself, or share them with your team, and discuss the activities and their impact as a team development exercise.