I received copies of this the other day in the mail! I was a feature writer for the American Chiropractor, and what was super cool was that they allowed me to write about the ego. I just love how progressive they are and also grateful that it went out to so many people (I think they said around 38 000).
It really takes a village. A village to help bust out old belief systems that are no longer serving ourselves, along with our families, communities and societies, so that we can truly create more love and peace in the world. It also takes a village to help us help more people, by way of family, emotional and spiritual support.
I’ve just come down from having three really intense weeks – being “busy” doesn’t even begin to do it justice. To the point where I felt so overwhelmed that when someone asked me to do something and said it would only take 3 minutes, I wanted to scream that I didn’t have 3 freakin’ minutes! I didn’t take the bait though and was able to check-in on whether or not this was important. In today’s article, I share some valuable reminders that helped me move through this crazy time so that you can reduce your stress level when you have a lot going on too 🙂
First, When we’re super busy, something has to go, so cut yourself a break first and foremost. I’m not talking about your typical level of being busy either. This is when you’re going above and beyond your norm. It might be when you’re working on a big project, working toward a big deadline, or extra stuff that has been added to your plate in your personal life. You. can’t. do. it. all.
Second, manage your expectations. Are you sure what you think needs to get done actually does? What I’ve noticed is that once we get busy, it’s hard to stop being busy. We seem to find more and more that becomes “urgent” that “must” be dealt with a-sap. If we stop and check-in we can often identify tasks that really aren’t that urgent and can actually wait. Ask yourself, is this really urgent? Who created the rule that it had to be done and when? This will likely be an eye opener.
Third, say no! The above also applies to other people’s expectations. If someone is asking you to do something, ask yourself if it really needs to be done now. Actually, I would start off by tuning in and seeing if it’s something you really want to do first of all. Is it in alignment with your values and bigger goals? What are the pro’s / con’s, consequences of not doing it, etc. Be aware of people pleasing. If it is a yes, then ask if it needs to be done now. What is important to someone else, may not be in our best interest. Like the above story I shared. It was really important to the other person that I do what she was asking. It was important to me to maintain the relationship, but also not a priority. I let her know I was slammed and when I could get to it by. So it wasn’t a no, it was a yes and later. I did this guilt free. Other people don’t know what you have going on and don’t need to. It’s okay for you to set boundaries around your time. If I had added in one more thing at that particular time, it would have thrown me over the edge.
Fourth, people who haven’t been in a similar situations aren’t going to understand your overwhelm so don’t try to explain. I caught myself looking for approval from someone who doesn’t have kids. The end of school is a crazy time, let’s face it. Even when we have support in place. I remember years ago when clients would tell me they couldn’t do things at the end of school and I thought it was a total excuse. Well it’s not. This was only one of the things causing extra overwhelm for me, and it is valid. It’s not the time to add in other things or trying to achieve lofty goals. It’s about being in survival mode. You don’t need the permission from anyone else to let yourself off the hook. Make decisions based on what works for you and do not feel the need to explain them to other people. They likely don’t care anyway – it’s more about unfounded guilt coming up in you. No guilt needed here.
Fifth, ask for help. It takes a village. Be vulnerable and ask. We love to help other people right? But when it comes to us being the ones who need help, we’re not as great at asking / receiving. People want to help, just like we want to help them. Let them. During that crazy time, I was reminded of the power of community in both personal and business.
Sixth, schedule in extra self-care. I forgot this initially and was reminded by the universe with what felt like a 2×4 hitting me over the head. Oh ya, self-care, right. It’s not sustainable to operate at such a crazy pace without a break. A good break. I continued to exercise throughout that time of my usual 5 days a week, which was a huge shift for me. I normally would have put that on hold until the busy period was over, but it was what actually helped me to move through it much more easefully. The type of self-care I’m taking about though, is in addition to doing that. Scheduling in total down time where you RELAX. I added in a beach walk right when the majority of the crazy was finished, and then a day off as soon as I was able. Planning it in advance is the best way to ensure it will happen. It’s a great practice to get into.
Self-care is imperative, because the energy we put out is what we will get back. We have to take the time to decompress, reset and get grounded. This leads to more opportunities in life that will provide peace and happiness. It’s where our creativity lies, where we see solutions and next steps, and how we make magic happen 🙂 This is the empowered place I’m always referring to, where you can truly be of service and have more to give. It’s where healthy self-esteem lives.