If you feel that your symmetry is teetering on the edge, it’s time to make changes before the challenges of managing it all overwhelm you.
For several decades, researchers all over the world have asserted that what goes on in the mind affects the body. Overwhelm leads to our low feelings: our heads fall, our shoulders sag, and our breathing becomes shallow. In fact it has been conclusively proved that overwhelm triggers a whole chain of physio-biological reactions, which are designed to make us feel this way.
On the other hand, managing our feelings, thoughts and positive attitudes make us feel so much better. Our heads are held up, we tend to look up, stand taller, breathe deeper and fuller. Even the simple act of smiling can make an enormous difference to your state. The act of smiling sets off a biological reaction that affects all parts of the body. It stimulates the heart and the lungs. It increases the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain. The body’s excretory organs function more smoothly clearing the body of harmful toxins.
I’m sure you would love all this goodness daily. So, here are my secrets for dealing with overwhelm.
1. Everything is perfect, and there is room for improvement and regaining work-life balance. It takes time and energy to resist reality. The foundation of managing overwhelm is to accept what is and take it from there; with no pressure on YOU.
2. Putter. Puttering orients you in time and space of your life while making mental room for you to notice what really wants to be top priority.
Tip: Set a time limit on puttering if you are worried that you will lose the entire working day to it.
3. Take the attitude that you will, of course, do what is most important, even if you do not yet know what it is or how you will do it. Be curious about what you don’t know how to do rather than worrying about it.
4. Clean house. When your insides are churning with anxiety over multiple commitments, create order outside.
Tip: This seems to work best if you clean with a light heart, though I have worked through some pretty gnarly problems while fiercely scrubbing the kitchen floor!
5. Use every means available. Make plans and act spontaneously. Make lists and do what needs to be done whether or not it is on the list. Managing overwhelm means mingling both direct and indirect ways of moving forward.
6. Be real. However linear or spontaneous, ground your choices in your real life and work experience. It doesn’t make sense to simply ignore a deadline or to pretend that a complex piece of work can be done in 10 minutes.
7. Revise your commitments. Promises are not made to be broken, but some are made to be revised. Act promptly to revise commitments that you cannot or will not keep.
8. First things first. Take time for exercise, prayer, meditation, and simply “defragging” no matter how busy you are. Doing these things first each day enlivens you and gives you the resilience and resourcefulness to do your best.
9. Breathe. First, last, and always, let a rising bubble of anxiety be your reminder to breathe.
Whether or not you own your own business, life is often overwhelmingly rich. I wish you joy in the dance as you move with order and disorder, discipline and insight, gracefully maintaining that symmetry, so that you can have a successful business and a happy family. You may find THIS PREVIOUS BLOG helpful.
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