Whew!

Speaking and seminars have started again. We’re working on 11 website projects. I’m traveling for an association I manage and I’m planning their golf tournament. Then add the personal activities… my son’s football season, my daughter’s volleyball season, training for a 25k and a duathlon.

One morning you wake up and email is out of control. The to-do list is a mess with notes on a dozen different pages, sticky notes, and backs of envelopes. The desk is in total disarray.

Life happens from time to time and the statement is right: The only thing you can really control is how you react to things out of your control.

So where do you start? Acceptance (grace and self-forgiveness!)

The biggest step is accepting that things are out of control! Sometimes life is filled with things outside your control. Unknown

Even the most energetic and efficient people occasionally have off days. Forgive yourself, make adjustments, and move on. Julie Morgenstern

Say to yourself: “I accept that! The schedule got hectic! Between the conference I attended, the golf tournament I planned, my kid’s sports, and the volunteer work, things got out of control. I accept that.” Now let go of the past! We can’t change the past. What happened in the past happened. Our only hope is to accept that and look to the future.

That being said, some reflection is good. What is preventing you from getting things done? What are self-sabotaging habits that are hindering our productivity? Sometimes, internal forces and fears prevent us from achieving the life we desire. By recognizing certain self-sabotaging habits, you can begin to break free of their control.

Just as entrepreneurs empower themselves by knowing their values (strengths), they are also empowered by knowing their weaknesses. This is just as critical. So if you haven’t already, get a fix on them too. Morgenstern

Other tips to do when things get out of control:

Clean

If things are out of control, I’m sure your desk is a mess! So clean it! Sort those papers. Compile the to dos. Recycle the magazine you’ll never read. Dust and wipe off the top.

Now look around; isn’t it pretty? Breathe in deep and enjoy a tidy space. Clearing out the excess from our spaces, schedules and to-do lists gives us energy and clarity to move forward. Organization is just so freeing- if you invest the time it frees you to deal with all of the surprises that life throws at you. Morgenstern

Exercise

Walk. Bike. Climb stairs. Row. Throw a few punches at a boxing bag. It will relieve some stress and give you energy to tackle that to do list or email inbox!

Besides we need to take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live. Jim Rohm and a healthy outside starts from the inside. Robert Urich

Set Small Goals

If your to-do list is the making of a short novel and your email count is ticking up as quickly as the deficit, ‘complete my to-dos’ or ‘get to zero inbox’ are impossible goals. Set small goals. It can make you feel like you achieved something and therefore feel more in control.

  1. Do five things from my to-do list every day for two weeks.
  2. Respond to half of the emails in my inbox.
  3. Make five sales calls every day for two weeks. (And log them in my CRM.)
  4. Read one article a day.

Keep yourself accountable by telling a friend what you’re trying to achieve.

Plan

Pull out your planner. If you don’t have one, get one. (But it doesn’t have to be a multi-step, super fancy, all the bells and whistles, 17 videos to watch before you can start using it system. If it’s too hard to start using it, you’ll never start. Get a simple journal book.)

Plan out a week. Seeing a controlled week helps get a handle on things and gets rid of that chaotic, out-of-control feeling. One thing to plan for, your planning session for next week. Before you leave for the weekend, know what is planned for next week. If you invest the time to plan, you will find yourself making the time you need to get to what is most important. Schedule Organizing Sessions. Getting organized doesn’t happen in your “spare time.” Set appointments with yourself to get the job done. Morgenstern

Expect Less

We live in a world that tells us to want more, be more, and do more. We see articles like “How To Be More Productive” and “Productivity Hacks of the Most Successful CEOs”. Those are everyone else’s expectations. What are YOUR expectations? What will bring YOU satisfaction? Most of the time, it’s less.

Other tips you would share to help others gain control again!? Email me. Perhaps they can be compiled for a follow up to this blog article.

Thanks for reading! Remember, You Got This!

~ Stephen