The First Rule of Fight* Club (aka dealing with overwhelm in entrepreneurship)
Now, by 'fight' - obviously I mean the ongoing battle with overwhelm most entrepreneurs face.
Who hasn’t felt that way at times?
By nature, as entrepreneurs, we’re - shall we say - driven people.
Give us a problem - we’ll solve it.
Multitasking? You got it.
Marketing department, admin, bookkeeper, PR person, designer, web developer, social secretary, CEO - how many hats do you wear on a daily basis?
And every day it feels like the pile of ‘to dos’ for your life and business grows higher and more unconquerable - even if you’ve delegated or outsourced some things off your plate.
Am I right?
Of all the problems I help my clients with, this is probably the most common - and one of the most debilitating I come up against.
Usually it goes something like this.
“I’ve just got far too much to do and not enough time to do it in”.
Then, a little later on in our discussion “I procrastinate so much”, or “I’ve got loads of unfinished courses I’ve started and know I need to finish”.
And inevitably “I’ll sometimes spend whole days doing little jobs, get to the end and realise I’ve wasted a whole day achieving nothing”.
Often that’s followed by “I end up spending evenings and weekends trying to catch up” and “I never feel like I get any proper time out, I’m always thinking about my business or doing odd bits of work while I’m with my family”.
Nobody ever seems to want that, though.
Funny enough, we want more downtime. We crave headspace.
We DO this because we want an easy, time-abundant, stress-free life - right? So what’s going wrong?
Is it all to do with the fact we haven’t time-blocked properly?
Is it because we’re not following the latest productivity craze?
Is it because we need a fancier journal that’s better at helping us organise our heads?
Is there a book out there somewhere with some amazing method that will turn our lives upside-down, make everything easy peasy and have us frolicking through the cornfields?
Of course not (apart from my book, obvs - get 3 free chapters here!).
It’s nothing to do with the WAY we’re doing things.
And it’s nothing to do with our capability - although don’t we give ourselves a hard time and call ourselves all sorts of unkind things when our lives feel less than in control?
In fact it’s nothing to do with us, as a person, at all.
It’s all to do with our subconscious primitive minds - and the influence they’re having each moment, over our ability to control and manage our experience of pressure and time.
Read that again, if you need to.
Our minds are, left to their own devices, TERRIBLE at prioritising and seeing things in the context of the bigger picture.
And subconsciously we’re also desperate to appear (and stay) organised and on top of things - of course because we see the benefits, but also because we’ve all grown up seeing it as a societal badge of honour to be the one that can handle ‘all the things’ and come out smiling. Sound familiar?
Nobody wants to be seen to be the slacker, the one who leaves it all to everyone else, the one with time on their hands… do they?
So no matter how much we logically know we’d REALLY love some time on our hands (to - oh, you know - actually enjoy life), our subconscious mind also fears the idea because it might make us something of an outcast and less ‘worthy’ of social approval.
Oh. Yeah. Wow.
Have you ever noticed how it’s almost become obligatory to tell everyone you’ve been ‘So busy’ and ‘So stressed’ when they ask how you are?
Or ‘Oh, good, you know, but this and this and this….’.
Saying you’re great and life’s been pretty simple just doesn’t quite seem to cut it, does it - we almost have to ‘one-up’ everyone for the ‘I’m the Busiest and Most Stressed But Coping the Best’ award.
I know, it's not always easy to hear.
BUT - it doesn't make the fact we're feeling overwhelmed any less valid.
And it's worth considering whether this might just be lurking there in your subconscious, making life just a little bit harder for you than it needs to be.
So the first thing to do if you want to beat overwhelm?
Make friends with the idea that it’s A.Ok. to mentally label yourself ‘relaxed’ and your life ‘easy’ if that’s how you want it to be (and don’t worry if it doesn’t feel that way yet… we can work on that).
It’s not shameful.
People actually want you to be happy rather than Superwoman/Man/Person- and fully available for the things you really want to do!
Let's embrace that and stop fighting our freedom.
P.S. Here's that link to 3 free chapters of The Path to Purpose, Peace & Profit again.
And when you're ready, I can help you stop fighting yourself and get to a place where your rational, self-loving brain is firmly in charge and overwhelm leaves the building.
Here's how you can work with me to achieve that and so much more.