March 7th, 2014
I get lots of calls around this time of year. People are ready to get help with their new year resolution (get organized) after trying it on their own. While everyone has their own unique story about how or why the clutter accumulated, I hear the same three things over and over from almost every person.
Overwhelmed, Too Much & Not Enough
Those words are like the holy trinity of organizing and there’s lots of pain associated with them. They each carry their own meaning and burden.
I could go on for days dissecting, analyzing, giving solutions to each word/phrase in that trio but I tell my clients to tackle one room at a time in the organizing process so I’m going to follow my own advice.
Let’s get into Not Enough.
Not enough…time, money, space, living, peace, rest, laughter, calmness and so on.
Not Enough translates into not Doing Enough..to be a good wife, mother, daughter. They’re not doing enough in their communities to make a real impact. They’re not doing enough for themselves to be healthy and present. They’re not Doing Enough of what they really want to be doing and time is running out.
Want to know the funny thing about all of this?
My clients who feel like they’re not Doing Enough are actually doing Too Much on a daily basis which leads them to be Overwhelmed and in turn they feel like they’re Not Enough!
Oh the tangled webs we weave. They’re all connected which stinks, but it’s also great because if you work on improving one, the others will follow.
Tackling The Not Enough Blues
1. Breathe Baby – Sounds simple but seriously, sit down in a quiet place for 15 minutes a day. Close your eyes and take some deep breaths. I do a breathing exercise where I focus on the exhale not the inhale. So I inhale and count slowly (to myself) while exhaling. It calms me down, gets some extra oxygen to my brain and once I’m done I can focus better. Now you’re ready for the next steps.
2. Learn to Say NO – If you feel like there’s not enough time in your day, well you’re probably right. Take a look at your schedule. Is it jam packed from the time you rise until you crash into your bed at night? What can be eliminated from your calendar? Do you have to volunteer at every school function? Do you have to go to every birthday party you & your kids are invited to? Nope. You do not. Practice the art of saying no. It can be as simple as, “I’m sorry, I’m not available.” or “I’d love to help out but my schedule doesn’t allow for it at this time.” Keep it simple and move on guilt free (another art form for sure).
3. Stop Multi-Tasking – Women pride themselves on being multi-tasking mavens but in truth it’s impossible to do well. Trying to do many things at once leads to feeling frazzled and nothing really gets done the way that it should. Focus on one thing at a time. Turn off all distractions like the TV, computer, cellphone, kids ( don’t you wish they had on/off switches sometimes?) set a timer and devote yourself to one thing completely. You’ll be surprised at how much you’ll accomplish that way.
4. Curb The Negative Nelly – We all having less than positive thoughts swimming around in our heads but at some point you have to practice letting them go. If you constantly think you don’t have enough that will lead you to feel anxious and stressed. It makes it difficult to problem solve and take action if that’s the place you’re coming from. Acknowledge your negative thoughts but look at how they are inaccurate or not helpful. Replace it with something that will move you forward and put you in a better place. Remember..you have enough and you are enough.
5. Make Time For You - I know this is a difficult thing for so many of us working moms to do but the benefits are truly worth it. Go for a walk, take a dance class with a friend, treat yourself to a pedicure, reconnect with people who always make you feel great. Sometimes the Not Enough Blues stems from feeling isolated so reach out to those you love and push through.
6. Follow Your Passion - Many times the not enough feelings creep in when our lives are packed doing the things we have to do. You know the daily errands, the carpool grind, household chores, homework with the kids, etc. Stop and take notice of this. Are you days completely full of things that don’t set your heart on fire? Yes we all have to do things to keep our households and families going. We may sometimes dread these tasks. For me it’s the laundry, but also schedule some time to pursue the things you feel passionate about whether it’s a charity or cause or reading a great novel.