Holy hell and Happy Monday to me. Just looking over my ‘To Do’ List for today and the rest of the week. Ambitious describes it best. I set some intense goals for myself to round out the end of the month and I know damn well I can accomplish them but I kinda freaked this morning when my reminder notifications started dinging on my phone. I set goals big enough to stretch me but not so big that I set myself up to fail, so what gives?? Why am I feeling the pressure?
I am a huge planner. I love planning ahead and making lists. Even better than making the lists is marking items off the list when I finish them. It feeds my little organized mind and I feel a sense of accomplishment. But I can overwhelm myself quickly when I’m going after bigger life goals like running a successful coaching business and maintaining my health. Despite breaking them down into smaller chunks and creating ’next step’ action items, overwhelm creeps in. I don’t know about you but there are times when I look at my calendar for the upcoming week and I start to feel the panic sneak up. How am I going to get all this done and deal with the daily stuff that inevitably arises? Like my Keurig that stopped brewing properly this morning. This woman enjoys her morning organic cup of dark roast so this will simply not do. Insert look of confusion followed by slight annoyance on my sleepy face. Add it to the list and give thanks that I live within walking distance of five coffee shops. Feeling overwhelmed happens to all of us and most days I can plow through. But if that overwhelm is big enough instead of tackling the list I shut down. AKA, Brooke turns on Netflix and zones out until the feelings goes away.
Yeah, not so effective because then all those items get moved to tomorrow’s already heavy list leaving me even more annoyed with myself. I want to get a grip and get back to work, but how?? What’s a badass woman to do?
It’s then that I notice my heart rate is slightly elevated and my mind won’t stop racing. I’m big on meditation as well as centering and grounding ourselves so I can focus. So I do what I always do when I notice this. I breathe. I breathe and put my feet on the floor and rest my hands in my lap and breathe some more. I come back to the present moment. I reconnect with myself. See, when I am able to do this I can calmly focus and then move into action. Now I can look at my calendar for today and instead of seeing the whole week or even the whole day I choose to look at only the next item on the list. Only one item at a time. One item is manageable, doable. Next up on my list was “gym”. I focused on that and that alone. Got in my gym gear and headed directly there. I didn’t answer any emails or return that missed phone call because I needed to focus on the next task at hand. Once it was done, then I could focus on my next item. It’s like I had tunnel vision but the good kind. It helps me to only look at the next item so I can decrease that pressure. Felt good to mark it of my list when I got back home.
Sometimes we get caught up in all the busyness of life and work. Our calendars look like a sea of reminders, events, lists and appointments. No doubt we have those days where we handle that agenda like a boss. Kicking some major ass and taking names. But on those days when we feel overwhelmed we can notice where we are at and with awareness come back to the present moment. We may need to prioritize and take some items off the list for the day allowing us time to focus on what most needs to be done. We may need to simply focus on the very next item on our agenda and tackle that before moving on. Do what needs to be done today one step at a time. Give yourself big praise as you mark off each item on the tough days. Choose to be present in the moment and take care of what needs your attention. Know that you have what it takes to get the job done.