Two strategies for a stressful life

Aug 21st
School work and stress

I’m taking a break from the Simple Eating series for just a minute because I wanted to talk about how going back to school and being part-time at work again has me STRESSED OUT. I’m trying to be the most prepared human being on the planet, but we all know that organization is not my strongest quality (hence why this blog goes through phases of posting and awkward silence).

Here’s the dealio. I know I’m not alone in being the only person who takes on too much … I’m way too aspirational and have way too many goals. I want to work like crazy, kick ass in my classes, continue working with my dietetics marketing group, continue my side projects (including the blog), and go to as many CrossFit classes as my little body can handle. I want to do all of this while budgeting my money, still having a strong social life, giving my doggy all the attention he deserves, eating very healthy, meal planning on the weekends, and not having to buy new undies because I’ve put off laundry for far too long.

I could literally keep going with a hundred other things I want to keep simultaneously afloat, but I think my point has been made. High expectations, much? It’s exhausted just thinking about all that!

Something’s gotta give, right?

The perfectionist and overachiever in me has a really hard time saying “yes” to that question. I struggle with admitting I can’t do it all. So, I’m working on that. And resisting the urge to plan out every minute of every day so that I can strategically accomplish all of the above-mentioned things. And sleeping. Wow, I forgot about sleeping.

But there are TWO little strategies I’ve tried recently and would like to share with the rest of you busy people out there.

20 minutes of productivity

I am so, so sorry because I can’t remember where I read this tip, but it goes like this: You get home from work and you’re exhausted. But now you really need to write a blog post/do some homework/keep working, and finding the motivation to plunk down at your desk for the evening is just too much. You can’t.

Instead of ignoring your responsibilities, sit down at your desk for 20 minutes. That’s it. Just 20. Set your alarm on your phone if you want, but promise yourself uninterrupted productivity for 20 minutes.

Not only is it great to get 20 minutes of work out of the way, chances are, that’s enough time to get you back in the zone and ready to work again. You might be so in the zone that you dismiss that alarm and keep on truckin’.

I don’t know why this works, but tricking yourself into saying, “Okay, JUST 20 minutes and then I can veg out for a bit” seems to do the job of getting you back on track.

Choose one and get it done

A friend recommended this strategy to me. Do you ever get to that level of stressed out where you’re so overwhelmed that you’re almost crippled from doing anything at all? It’s that moment when you just wanna lay on the floor and let the disaster unfold.

Stop. Get up off that dirty carpet and pick one thing. Any one thing; I don’t care what it is. Your laundry. Dishes. A writing project. Reading assignment. Choose one and get it done. (Omg, you guys, that kind of rhymes). Being able to cross something off your list makes everything seem a little bit more, oh, tackle-able.

The to-do list might still be long and the hours in the day will still be dwindling, but at least that damn to-do list didn’t get the better of you!

We’ll get back to your regularly scheduled Simple Eating posts next week. It’s on my to-do list.  😉