What to do when you feel like you don’t have enough time?

I think this happens to us all from time to time.

Stress and anxiety can result in time ‘speeding up’. You spend so much time feeling overwhelmed that by the time you go to take action, it already feels like it’s too late. And so you go back to feeling overwhelmed again and the cycle repeats.

Slow down

When you feel like there isn’t enough time, your instincts probably tell you to speed up but it turns out that you’re better off doing the opposite. An easy way to slow yourself down is to meditate.

Taking just 10 minutes is incredibly impactful because it’ll help to reduce overwhelm. But also, 10 minutes of meditation feels a lot longer than 10 minutes of watching a tv show. It’s sort of like time slows down when you relax which might inspire you to embrace a more relaxed way of living.

Make note of how you feel

Perhaps you feel tired, stressed, jittery or tense. What can you do to help combat those things? Identifying how you feel not just emotionally but also physically can be great a great starting point to help shift the feelings.

Stretching or a quick workout could help calm the jitters. If you’re tired, maybe you need to rest. Once you tend to your needs you can get back to doing whatever needs to be done from a much more relaxed headspace.

Write down exactly what you need to do

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by big tasks and feel like ‘there’s so much to do i don’t have enough time, I don’t know where to start’. Writing things down helps ease the anxieties because once you know exactly what you need to do it makes it much easier to start getting things done. For people like me bigger tasks need to be broken down into smaller tasks.

An example of this is when I was recently tidying my bedroom, I wrote down each specific area I wanted to tidy. Doing this made me realise the overall task wouldn’t take as long as I thought and I actually had more than enough time to do it. However, because I’d given myself several smaller tasks it meant that I could have split them over 2 or 3 days if I genuinely didn’t have enough time to do it in one day.

Give yourself 5 minutes

It probably doesn’t seem like much or like it could possible be enough but sometimes all you need is 5 minutes.

So often we tell ourselves that we don’t have the time for certain things. They could be things that take minutes not hours or days but somehow we still find a way to make excuses.

Perhaps you’re feeling stressed out and overwhelmed. A thought comes to you that maybe meditating might help but you push it aside because you feel as though you don’t have the time.

But what if you just gave yourself 5 minutes.

I’ve found that more often than not, the act of slowing down to meditate even just for a little while works wonders. And other times, I am reminded of the importance of making time to slow down and so I give myself 20 minutes, half an hour or even an hour.

The problem is rarely that you don’t have time but instead that you aren’t willing to make time for the things that will actually benefit you.

It might not be procrastination

Sometimes what we call procrastination is actually just making the choice not to do something. Just because you have a task to complete, doesn’t mean you need to do it right away, maybe you don’t feel like it.

We often create this sense of urgency as though nothing can or should be done any later than right now.

Of course, there is a clear issue when not completing the task has negative repercussions such as being overloaded, stressed and rushing to complete things. However, if you’re simply choosing to do something later then it might not be so bad.

Overwhelmed

People that have have a habit of taking on more than they can manage rarely make the effort to try and ease their load. Instead they accept the period of stress as though there is no other choice. In fact they’ve come to rely on the stress and looming deadlines to spur them on and get things done.

However, this doesn’t always work. Sometimes the stress just leaves you stressed.

That’s not what you want when you’re under the impression that you can use stress to your advantage.

Sometimes stress leaves you overwhelmed and unable to focus like normal to the point where you’d rather quit than carry on. It’s not healthy to put yourself under unnecessary pressure, especially when you have the option to make things easier for yourself.

And so start paying attention to yourself. How much can you take on before you start to feel overwhelmed? Learn to start saying no before you reach your limit and end up feeling overloaded.

It’s not that important

Sometimes things that aren’t that important get dressed up to be the most important thing in the world.

You react by getting overwhelmed and stressed. This effects you’re sleep, general mood and how you interact with others.

As much as you want to feel good within you’re body, you can’t help but sacrifice that for the sake of the thing that is important.

But then you might find that the deadline you’d been proiortising was much more flexible than you thought.

And so, even though you rushed about trying to get things finished, it turns out it was pointless. You were much better off making yourself priority.

Small wonderful moments

In life there are small wonderful moments that remind you to trust that everything is always working itself out.

These moments occur almost randomly yet they’re in perfect synchronicity.

It’s so easy to get caught up in ‘the overwhelm’. The overwhelm is the stress, anxiety and fear that occurs in life. These occurrences may be big or small but often we hold onto them much tighter than we need to and we let them consume us.

And then suddenly something happens like you notice a beautiful flower, you receive a message from someone you hold dear or something makes you laugh.

It’s always something small but it’s more than enough to totally transform your day.

What matters most?

When it comes to what is important sometimes we confuse external pressures or expectations with what really matters to us personally.

In doing so we end up focusing on and prioritising the wrong things.

These external things could come from work, family or friends and they overwhelm us because we aren’t clear about what we’re willing to give.

Maybe you end up working late because you have a lot of deadlines in a short period of time and it’s important that it gets done. But, if you take the time to think it turns out that what matters most to you is that you have time to de-stress as being busy has you in a constant state of overwhelm.

It’s important that the work get’s done but our wellbeing is what matters most.

Even if you know what matters most sometimes it still turns out that we’re not able to acknowledge and take action in the moment. It’s only upon reflection that we’re able to identify what we should have done at the time.

More than you can manage

Sometimes in a bid to grow, develop and push ourselves we end up taking on more than we can manage.

You think the challenge is what you need, you think you need to be pushed and you want to prove yo yourself that you can manage.

But often you just end up stressed and overwhelmed, wishing that you had said no instead of yes. Often the end result is far from what you intended because the stress and overwhelm didn’t give you the adrenaline to produce something great, it left you feeling burnt-out and exhausted.

And so it is important to find the balance between pushing yourself and pushing yourself overboard.

Does more choice make us happier?

A lot of people regularly find themselves overwhelmed.

The possibilites in every area of life are growing more and more each day.

There was a point in time where what you ate was limited to what you could kill and what you could grow at that time of year.

On one hand having more choice gives us the possibility of a richer life with more freedom. And let’s not forget, the increase in choice is the result of innovation that has has resulted in more options than humans once thought was possible.

However, having more choice can also make things harder, having 100 options instead of 10 can end up causing unnecessary stress. This in turn can reduce your overall happiness.

I think the important thing to remember is that no matter how much or how little choice you have, there is always room for innovation.

But we can’t ignore the unhelpful side effects of increased choice and so the important thing to remember is that when you know what you want you’re less likely to be overwhelmed.

The consumer doesn’t care

The viewer or the consumer does not have to care about what went on behind the scenes. They are there for the art not the person and I think that in some cases that’s the way it should be.

In other cases, like on social media, the consumer is often there for the person just as much as if not more than they’re there for the art (or whatever creative thing that the person does).

This is why people with highly dedicated fans/followers will be supported no matter what they do.

I think that because of social media there are now blurred lines between what is business and what is personal.

But it is important to know that just because you’re visible online and people may know what you do it doesn’t mean that they care. Some people are there for the work, not for you and that is perfectly alright.

So, if you offer a product or service and the customer is not satisfied they might voice how they feel. If it is not considered good enough the customer doesn’t necessarily care that you did your best and that you will be better next time. They care that they bought someone thing they are not happy with.

And so your job is not to find customers that care about you personally but to instead to show up, create great work and deliver.