Implementation or Overwhelm (3 minute read)

Does this ever happen to you?

Reading or listening to some great information and you want to make sure and remember it, so you take notes because you want to implement what you are learning?PAFF_042414_Notetakingbyhand_newsfeature

Then, if you do have something available to take notes with/on, what do you do with the notes, while you go on to the next thing that needs your attention?

Sound familiar?

Then, all of a sudden (it’s not, but doesn’t it feel like?) you are swamped by all these important notes, ideas and “must do’s”!

What to do next when feeling overwhelmed? You could: ignoring it, or pouring a glass of something soothing or go screaming from the room!

Let’s look at this in a different focus, yes?

Let’s start with the belief that we can:  1. Make time for the things that are important and 2. We don’t need to:  a. read it all, b. implement it all, today this very minute and 3. it’s a process or one step at a time.

Ok, let’s implement these beliefs we just a talked about….

  1. We all have the same 24 hours in a day (don’t you hate hearing clock-295201_640that?). How do we want our time to be spent? Do you hate searching for things? How much time is lost searching? You may be at the tipping point. It’s worth blocking (yes, time blocking) xx number of hours to organize, clean up, throw out, or whatever it is that, is in the way of you finding the things that you need to fine most often. Upside? After you have done the painful part (blocking out the time, and then honoring the block) you will be amazed, the next time you search for ______________ and FIND it, or know where it is, and you haven’t spent forever looking for it! You can and should, pat yourself on the back, and thank yourself for dealing with that challenge! Is it worth it? You be the judge. For me, I’m more than happy to decrease the challenges in my day!
  2. Overwhelmed with information. The truth is, we will never, ever be able to read and process it all. Never. Feel free to Google just how much is published, how often. It’s staggering. My IPad is a good example of wonderful books on Kindle that I “plan” on reading, “some day.” You too? What is REALLY important for you to keep up on? Emails from your child’s teacher, from parents? Corporate notices of upcoming meetings? Latest trends in your field? Latest trends in the field you are considering switching too? Take a minute, when you are needing to switch gears, and make a quick inventory of the types of info that comes into your world that is over whelming. levenger-agenda-and-paper-apps-8This can be email, text, calls, magazines, snail mail, newsletter (both e & paper). Whatever it is, let’s start to get a handle on it by making a quick, brief list. This list is not by title, (you can if you want), this exercise is so we can get a grasp of the issue.

Do you see a pattern? Are you still receiving magazines/newsletter for a project or passion that is over with? If its email, you can unsubscribe (I do this during my brain dead moments) or you can use https://unroll.me/ which will “roll up” all the emails that you might enjoy reading, but don’t want cluttering up your inbox. Magazines? Most magazines have a Web site, and often a Facebook page. Use their online presence to unsubscribe. Email? I now have “rules” so that emails from lists, web sites, tips, etc. all go to their own files. The most important/interesting ones I have pop up quickly in an email window, and then go away. This way I’m tracking that it came in, and when I have time, I can go look. One e-newsletter that I really value, I have it automatically forward to Evernote, so when I’m on the go I can access it and/or if I need to forward the information to someone, I can on the spot.  There are lots of email hacks available. It’s about finding the one that shaves off the irritation that you are dealing.

  1. One step at a time. Sure, you may be ready to toss your computer, cell phone or desk out the window! And I understand how let down you feel that your Fairy GodMother hasn’t shown up in weeks to take care of some of this overload! I get it! In the meantime, it’s a process. That saying, “Rome wasn’t built in a day” – have you ever really thought about it? Like, maybe while in the shower? All the steps andHistory_Mankind_Roman_Roads_SF_still_624x352 moving pieces, and when they had a questions, they couldn’t Google it! You may want to start with a small irradiation/annoyance/overload, and start to triage. You may want to look at some of the resources I have listed below (clearly not an exhaustive list!).  We all have choices. You may want to hire some one to help you change a process that isn’t working, or hire a VA to deal with email, or hire a David Allen consultant to work with you… or…  There are lots of hacks available. Perhaps what you need, most of us need is just more sleep. I know, when? But what a difference enough sleep makes!

Most importantly, know that you are not alone in dealing with this 21st century Life Style!

Please share your hacks and suggestions, so we can all learn! Thanks!

Resources:

These are my favorites. Please feel free to add your favorites or the resources that have been the most helpful to you.

David Allen “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity” and “Making It All Work” Winning at the Game of Work and the Business of Life”.    http://gettingthingsdone.com/

Tim Ferriss “the 4-Hour Work Week”      http://fourhourworkweek.com/

Moran & M. Lennington “The 12 Week Year” http://brianpmoran.com/12-weeks-to-my-first-book/

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