Everyone experiences frustration and overwhelm at some point in their lives. Some more than others. This doesn’t mean that those people are weaker or not as good as the ones that (seem to) have it all under control–it’s just that they need a little more guidance and encouragement to really sort things out to be able to take steps forward.
Going through many years of my own bouts of frustration and hopelessness, as well as working with and talking to people who have similar experiences, I’ve come to realize this is actually a very common issue in most people.
These tips are steps I’ve personally used and shared with others to help them get out of their obstructed mindset so they can boost productivity, get motivated and get moving!
GET IN FRONT OF THE OVERWHELM
When you feel overwhelmed it creates chaos and procrastination. It creates the feeling that it will take A LOT (or a loooong time) to get to where you want to be or to get something completed.
These feelings further distract you and cause crippling effects that prevent you from making any moves or progress.
Really sit back and THINK– what is causing you to feel so overwhelmed about getting this task done? Why is it making you feel swamped by everything you have to do?
Getting to the core of what's causing you to feel very overwhelmed and discouraged will allow you to get it out in the open where you can see it, dissect it, work on the smaller pieces and then be able to really focus so it won’t look or feel so scary!
Try this out: Write out a list of everything you need to do and get done. Break each one down into smaller pieces of what needs to get done and the order they need to be completed in/by, then estimate how long it will take you.
Try going after the easier or shortest step first that way you can ease yourself into a big task one small, simple step at a time.
CAN WHAT'S NOT WORKING
More often than not we know what’s working and what isn’t. It’s usually a matter of coming to terms with what isn't and deciding to let it go or change it. Let’s be real–change is hard! And we hold onto our old ways for dear life most of the time.
A big step forward towards what you want is to evaluate what you’re doing. What has worked and what hasn’t?
Try this out: Sometimes we avoid things like writing something down or taking the time to make out a list even though we know they will provide some insight into what’s really going on, as well as get a more clear and organized route.
Try dedicating some time to write down what you’ve been doing in complete detail. Then go back through it and make notes next to each thing on how it went or if it’s really something you should spend any more time doing, or trying to do.
Once everything is in front of you you'll begin to see the big picture. Allow yourself to omit things that aren’t serving you and don't be surprised of you find some inspiration to add in some new things to try!
BLOCK OFF TIME AWAY FROM DISTRACTIONS (AHEM...SOCIAL MEDIA!)
Don’t get me wrong, social media can be used for good and productivity like making connections, marketing your business or event, and building relationships. But, wasting away hours just mindlessly scrolling through your news feed can make you wonder where all your time went.
We all love a funny meme or cute pics of your friend’s kids and animals, but the line has to be drawn if you ever want to get things done.
Try this out: Think about anything you feel distracts you or causes you to put things off, whatever they may be, and commit yourself to opening up to other options that will allow you to stop putting things on the back burner. Set a specific time to work on your list/goals/tasks and commit to doing it for a set amount of time (maybe 20-30 minutes). Giving yourself an "appointment" will increase your chances of actually sticking to it and getting something done.
As for social media–allow yourself time to just scroll (if that’s what you want) only during certain times OR only after you’ve completed your scheduled tasks, assignments, or to-dos for that day. This way you’re not avoiding your to-do list and you can still add in time to just chill and scroll! You’re more likely to be able to get into that groove and actually get things done.
STOP BEING SO HARD ON YOURSELF
The first thing we often do when things aren’t going our way or get overwhelming is blame and judge ourselves saying things like, "Everything I do is wrong", "I'm just not good enough or smart enough", "Everyone else has such an easier time than me", "This is too hard", or "Things just never go my way."
None of these thoughts are getting you any closer to your goals. They’re putting you in a crappy mindset and you wind up believing all the insults you’re telling yourself, therefore keeping you stuck in the frustration and overwhelm vicious cycle.
Try this out: Every time you hear yourself becoming negative or putting yourself down replace it with something positive. Instead of saying “This is way too hard, I can’t do this” try saying something like “This is challenging but I’m not going to give up. My actions may not be perfect but I’m doing the best I can and I’m committed to trying new things to get me to my goals.”
At first, it will feel weird and you probably won’t believe it. But, I challenge you to commit to 7 days of reversing your negative thoughts and words to positive ones. Changing habits can be difficult, but the more effort you apply and put into it the more results you’ll see and the happier you’ll be. You'll notice you’re getting more done and becoming more focused when you’re allowing yourself to speak uplifting words (and thoughts) into your daily life.
Having 100 things all over the place is a sure-fire way to find yourself super overwhelmed. Does your desk or workspace look like a tornado came through? Is your workspace your couch in front of the TV? Are you trying to concentrate and get things done in the middle of chaos?
My dear, I will tell you that you will have a very tough time being productive and getting anything done with everything in disarray.
Try this out: Spend 15-ish minutes just clearing out and straightening up your work area. Put everything you need in an accessible spot and put away (in order) everything else. Also, try adding some fun accessories, pictures, great smelling candles, or cool colors to your space to lift up your mood whenever you’re working. When your space is clear it leaves room for you to feel comfortable, empowered, and inspired to get things done!
What can you start doing TODAY to take at least one step forward?
Kristy Victor is a Confidence + Empowerment coach for women who feel like they missed their chance in life gain the confidence so that she can make the BOLD MOVE to create the life she wants.
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