You will only be overwhelmed if you allow yourself to be overwhelmed.
(major life crises excluded – you’re allowed to be overwhelmed then)
Unfortunately, I allow myself to be overwhelmed way too often.
In the past two months I’ve…
- hosted and spoke at an FTGI major conference and hosted 2 luncheons
- spoke at an outreach event
- attended my husband’s 4 day business conference
- hosted 2 major parties at my house of over 25 people at each of them
- had 7 people ( including one very tiny soft, sweet baby girl) stay at my house spanning 30 days straight of in-house company
- had the flu along with several members of the family
- had to navigate a very bad reaction while trying to wean off medication
- attended a baby baptism, a baby shower, a first birthday party and a work dinner with my husband
- attended a plethora of meetings
- had a daughter on Spring Break
And these are just the biggies, not to mention… cook, clean (which often are left undone) and maintain some of my work schedule.
Let me be clear, I am not complaining. Most of those things are things I really love to do and would do all over again. Some of them were unplanned or snuck up on me and threw me off my game. But that is life, right?
I’m sure if you listed out everything you’ve done in the past two months your list would be just as long.
Here are some things I am reminding myself of in order to not allow myself to be overwhelmed.
1) Be sure to create margins in your schedule.
Things pop up that need your attention whether you want to give it or not. Things pop up that you want to be able to jump in on and enjoy. If your schedule is too packed ~ the unplanned things in life will send you into a tailspin. Creating what I call “white space” on my calendar also allows time to feed your soul – to do something you love like read a book, paint, write, play. When “white space” is missing from my schedule I get overwhelmed.
2) Realize that you are only one person with the same 24 hours as everyone else.
I wrote another piece about this because it is hard to strike a balance but really – You Can Only Do What You Can Do! Trying to do more than what reasonably fits into your life is going to lead to feeling overwhelmed.
3) Say NO to some really good things in pursuit of sanity.
This month alone I had to opt out of 2 events I really wanted to go to, a radio interview and an offer to co-host a radio show. I have been known to say, “I want to have and do it all” in a passionate moment but in the real world I have to make some hard choices in order not to set myself up for chaos.
4) Commit my time to God
He is so much better at knowing exactly where I need to spend my time. Sometimes I get caught up and forget to consult the One who has numbered my days about how I should spend them! I find that if I take just a little time each morning to ask where my focus should be and ask Him to guide my steps life gets a lot smoother. He has designed me to thrive on being busy but He hasn’t designed everyone that way and He doesn’t wanted me overwhelmed or unavailable for the unexpected blessings that come along.
This seems to be a theme for me this year. I welcome your thoughts and suggestions!!