I am ultra sensitive to overwhelm, which allows me to catch it before I drown in it. And I’ve had to create a life of as much space and quiet time as I can.

So when a few weeks happen like they have recently where I am working later and have quick turn around times as I help someone launch a product I know I can handle it.

One reason is because I know there is an end in sight. My life is usually not crazy busy by design.

I take more breaks if I am working 12 hours – watch a dance on Dancing with the Stars, or read a chapter in a novel or eat lunch on the porch.

I make sure I get some exercise even if it’s 15 minutes of yoga or an evening walk around the block. The more stress and tension, the more we need to release it through exercise. I still got in my weekly walk with a friend.

Asking for more help from the family during this time means less dishes for me to wash. I did do daily things like keep my desk clear so it’s easier to work. I think clearer that way. But, some things like vacuuming and dusting didn’t get done at all one week. Meals were super quick and simple like soup and sandwiches.

The computer went off at least an hour before bed so I could sleep.

If your life is always crazy busy and you don’t like it that way, it’s time to make some deliberate choices.

Even in the most serene life, weeks of overwhelm pop up. But, you can handle it with some strategies like above.

What are you favorite tips for busy weeks?

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4 comments

  • dmarie

    I too feel overwhelmed easily and am really trying to think through strategies for making life more enjoyable as it comes. I would be curious to hear other ideas as well. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

    – cook on sundays. in the fall/winter months, i roast lots of different vegetables on sunday afternoon(carrots/sweet potatoes/broccoli/garlic/regular potatoes/beets, anything really and bake chicken and variations on making a pot of lentil soup (this will make enough meals for a different mix of lunches/dinners Sun-Wed) and eases the load of worrying about what to eat. it’s the BEST to get home after a long day and realize i have healthy, “home cooking” in the fridge.

    -plan for rest. i’m really, really trying to rest on sundays (except for the cooking part). this has made for more hectic saturdays so i’m still figuring out how to balance out the weekend. i highly recommend the book “Sabbath” by Wayne Muller. you’ll probably fall asleep reading it because the whole premise of the book is to honor the sacred rhythm of rest, which will relax you and seems indulgent somehow doesn’t it.

    -church. the time/space that church provides me to think/reflect/write/pray has become something i actually cherish in the week. it took me years to find this type of space so i’m grateful for it.

    -laughter. seek out something funny. youtube funny pet videos if all else fails.

    -affection. find a hug somewhere in the day.

  • Tika

    I live in always too much to humanly accomplish & overwhelmed. This year I listed everything I want to accomplish, pulled all the 5-10 min tasks onto a 2nd list, broke down the HUGE tasks into 30-60 mins. I do better with variety, each day different over the drill sargent’s must do’s today. I plan quick healthy meals – either something I have frozen from a past double recipe, crockpot, cook new items on weekends, AND each family member must contribute/do something at meal time. In summer we do a lot of grilled meats & veggies w/ BIG salad. I prep it ahead of time, my husband does the grilling & is required to accompany me to the grocery store!
    I now schedule FUN social time for myself too: play weekly- Am. Mah Jong, “schedule” work on an art piece (This rarely happens so need to learn not to forfeit this time!), write an monthly article; monthly social lunch group to try a NEW restaurant, our Memoir group is like adult story-time! I made a list of things I LOVED to do as a child: now I do one childhood joy during the week…if I go to the library I make sure I take a few minutes to swing at playground, (I am 60yo!)if waiting for someone – I listen to nature, go outside w/AM coffee to listen to the world waking up at 5AM, spend just 15-30″ gardening sometimes becomes 1hr before sundown & no longer a just another chore but a joy! Notice & compliment people for good unexpected things they do. I feel happier.

  • Rhonda

    My strategy for overwhelming weeks is first to pray. I also have to balance letting a few non essential tasks go, but balancing that with working on a task or two I’ve been procrastinating on, as well as straightening up things around the house so it looks more peaceful.

    Some weeks, when my traveling husband is gone for a few days, I choose a day to pick up take out food so there is no cooking supper, or doing dishes.

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