Overwhelmed and Overcommited

Here’s an honest question from an entrepreneur:

Somehow (because I said yes too many times) I feel I have over committed myself and am feeling stressed to the point that sometimes I shut down rather than tackle the list of to do’s. The good news is I am still meeting deadlines and getting things accomplished. However, intellectually I know that I could be doing better. I know I don’t do well with lots of choices. I am a bit of a perfectionist. Can you give me a place to start?

Here are some ideas when you know you are overcommitted and starting to procrastinate (which is not a surprising response):

  1. Make a list of everything that you currently have committed to (and it will probably freak you out). Don’t stop until you have listed EVERYTHING. It could take days or it could take hours. Use any prompt you have to help you get everything out of your head and onto a piece of paper. Believe me, it’s not worse having it all out on paper - it’s always been in your head, anyway. However, you can’t manipulate it or gain any sense of control as long as it’s only in your brain.

  2. Next, go through your list and divide it into current and future. You can write a C or F to designate which category or you could highlight in different colors. Note: While you’re going through your list, consider actually dumping a few of the items off the list altogether. Be very sparing about what you keep on your current (C) list.
  3. When you have winnowed your list down, then do some prioritizing of that list. And remember, I doubt there is anything on that list that will change the course of human history (which is not true for our new president’s to-do list)…but there are things on your list that are much more important that the others - personally and professionally.

The truth is, you cannot get everything done. You have to make choices about what you do and what you do not do. Your health, happiness, energy, mental capacity, etc. all depend on letting some things go. By focuses on fewer to-do’s, you will actually get more done. It’s counterintuitive, but it’s the truth.

ATP - Available to Promise

And to help you manage your time and commitments, you will want to access the teleseminar, ATP: Available to Promise How much time & energy (truthfully) do you have ‘available to promise’?, available for immediate download.

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