With everything that’s going on in life, it makes sense that you might find yourself feeling a bit overwhelmed sometimes. It can be tricky to find the right balance when it comes to both your business and personal life. Ultimately, you’re the one who knows just what to do when it comes to resetting, but part of what we do for our business is try to help you make the most out of yours. And we have a few tried and true ideas for shaking off that feeling of stress and work overload.
Get your space cleared out and set up
We’re all impacted by our spaces so much more than we realize, and there is such a thing as visual pollution—especially if you work in any kind of visual field. If you want to mitigate some of the stress you’re feeling, it can be immensely helpful to start with one small area that you fully control: your space. Get your space completely cleaned up and cleared out, and get rid of the mess and clutter in your office. This may mean you need to organize your desk or remove any excess items that aren’t bringing functionality or joy to your work environment. Once you get everything nice and tidy, make a cup of tea, pour a big glass of fresh water, and sit down before moving onto the next step!
Do a major to-do list brain dump
Often, the reason we feel overwhelmed is because we have so many different tasks swimming around in our brains that need to get done, but we have no real plan on how to accomplish it all. One way to cure some of this pressure is to sit down with a blank piece of paper and just write down every single thing that comes to your mind when you think about your never-ending to-do list. Don’t worry about structuring your list, making it look neat, or even coming up with any kind of order. Just write what comes to mind so you can release some of the stress. Your brain dump doesn’t need to make perfect sense because it’s only a reference point, and you’re going to filter it later anyway.
Sift through and prioritize
Once you have your full list of everything that’s currently overwhelming you, it’s time to go through that list and prioritize. Let’s be real, we all have at least one or two things on our list that should have been done yesterday (a week ago, last month…), and the longer you put it off, the harder it is to accomplish. Plus, it will only compound the stress you’re feeling. Best to just knock those lingering tasks out! So, go ahead and put those line items at the top of the list—you already know you need to complete them before anything else. Honestly, even finishing just two of your tasks will help get rid of some of that guilt you feel every time you remember your to-do list. From there, pull out the items that are going to be the most important for your business success or the items that actually need to get done immediately. Most of the time, once you’ve gotten started again, you feel that glorious rush of productivity, and none of your work will seem that bad after all.
Create a strong plan of action to cross the big items off
For the little things, like the emails that you’re simply not in the mood to send, there really is no solution other than to get those tasks done. But for those bigger items that are going to be more time intensive and will hurt your business if you keep procrastinating? Sit back and create a bullet point plan of action to get them done. If you’ve already set up the front end work for launching an email list two months ago, but haven’t set up any workflows and have subscribers just subscribing but getting nothing—well, that’s not great for business. Take a step back and think about what you’re going to need to get those email workflows up and running. Make everything into a simple action checklist. For example, “brainstorm 5 email subjects” is one action item, “write subject lines” is another, and “create content for welcome email” is a third. Taking a large, seemingly daunting task and turning it into smaller tasks with clear actions makes it so much easier to work through.
Make a plan of action for the remaining items
Instead of letting the items that aren’t high priority fall to the backburner again (and lead to another bout of feeling a bit defeated), make a plan for getting them checked off your list for good. You can use the above method to break down these big tasks into smaller, more actionable items, and then set a due date for them. Even if it’s something that doesn’t have a hard deadline, the fact that it’s on your to-do list means that getting it completed will in some way help your business— so set your own due date!
Once you get all of these steps checked off, the final step is to breathe. Whether or not it feels like it, you’ve actually just achieved a lot! Your immediate tasks have a clear path of action, and you know you’ll get them accomplished. Your longer term tasks have set due dates, and you’ve committed to getting them accomplished by then. You’re no longer having to rely on your brain to hold everything that needs to get done; you have a clear and easy plan of action. So, take a deep breath, maybe do a five-minute meditation to clear your mind, and then get to work!