What To Do When You’ve Got Too Much To Do

Too Much To Do

This week I had too much to do. And, I didn’t get a lot of it done. It didn’t feel good.

This can easily become a downward spiral. You don’t get things done, you don’t feel good. You then work later and longer and become tired as a result. Then when you become tired you get less done. And, if you keep pushing you can become unwell.

Sound familiar?

This was me this week. Here’s five things I’ve done in the past few days to claw my way back to normal…

1 Simplify

When I get overwhelmed with too much to do I do a big rethink on what’s on. For me, I usually notice I’m doing too many different things. As a result I’m rethinking all of my business activities. And, seriously considering dumping some of them and focusing on just one thing. I’ll think about this for a while to avoid any drastic decisions. What can you simplify in your life to claim some time back?

2 Effectiveness over Efficiency

There’s no point getting really good at something that adds little or no value to your game plan. Instead, work on what’s important. That’s effectiveness – choosing what’s important. You can get efficient later. I sat down and set some new priorities. This made it easy to follow point three.

3 Eliminate, Postpone or Cancel

Unfortunately I decided to postpone a meeting with a good friend. We haven’t seen each other for a while and it just wasn’t going to work when we had scheduled to meet. I rang to see if we could delay our meeting and thankfully she agreed. I also didn’t go to a social event I’d wanted to attend. And, I cut out another planned activity – not essential! What can you eliminate, postpone or cancel to get the important things done?

4 Clean Up

There’s some very obvious and easy signs for me to spot when I’m starting to get overwhelmed by too much on. There’s usually a mess around me. This might be dirty dishes sitting on the sink, papers on my desk, clothes on the floor, an overflowing laundry basket and not the right food in the fridge. To clear my head, I clean up. I even took a load of clothes to the charity shop. Whilst not essential, it helped me clear my mind and gave me some thinking space. What do you need to clean up?

5 Schedule Time

I complained to a friend that I wasn’t getting things done and that I had too much on. He politely suggested that I schedule time for the important things. D’oh! An obvious suggestion that had dropped out. When I don’t have a lot on I tend to freewheel doing a bit of this, a bit of that and roughly moving forward. When time gets tight, this doesn’t work. By putting time in the diary for the next month for getting things done at least calmed my mind down a little. Are you scheduling the important things in your life?

What are your strategies for when you’ve got too much to do?

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