You know when you are just trucking along and everything is going great and then all of the sudden, you look to the left and a small child wot happens to be yours looks a little green and next minute, you find yourself tending to their every need for the next few days and you can’t remember whether the clothes you are wearing were the exact same ones you wore yesterday, and the only way forward is the sniff test?
Or perhaps, you think, look at us go! We’re amazing! And then all of the sudden, your boss rings from work and the clean desk you left the day before is now piled high with to do’s due yesterday and you try to tell them, but I have a life! And they reply, what is this life you speak of?
Or perhaps you are the equestrian version of the Sound of Music, and then your left ear falls off, along with both knees no longer working and you lose your sense of smell and have to lie on the couch for two weeks?
Whatever the situation, we all have well, stuff, that gets in the way of our manicured and carefully procured plans. Even if we manage to graciously surrender to the moment, momentum can be hard to get back, and it’s easy to find yourself in a situation where the dust has lifted, your scratchy eyeballs are cured and your ear reattached, but now your mojo has left the building.
Sounds like an emergency plan is in order! Having found myself in a similar situation in the last few days, I thought it would be a good opportunity to share with you a brief plan for getting back on the literal and metaphorical horse.
- Look at what’s important
With all that out-of-control-ness that you have been living in, what’s needed is to get a handle on your own time again so you can actually gain some semblance of order. It sounds massively boring, but if your head is feeling like a pressure cooker of stuff that you have needed to get done but haven’t managed to, now is the time to look that puppy in the eye and get things sorted.
I write a list of things and then I ask myself these vital questions:
Is this important?
Does it need to be done now?
Does it need to be done by me?
If it’s not important, it can either be shelved until later or shaved off the list altogether.
If it doesn’t need to be done now, bump it.
If it doesn’t need to be done by me, am I able to delegate it or find some ways around it so that it’s no longer occupying my brain space.
Excellent. Let’s move on.
- Make a plan
With all of the above clarified, it’s time to make a solid plan for the week. My main way of dealing with this is to project myself forward 7 days and ask myself, if I was looking back on the week from the future, what are the top three most important things that I needed to get done?
That helps me sort of the uber-important things from the list of things that I have already flagged up as important.
Then- and this is really important- I MAKE TIME in the week. Like, I schedule it in. I give those tasks as much weight as any other non-negotiable appointment or thing I have to do.
- The horse side of things
It can be easy if you’ve taken an unplanned break to get back into it, especially if things were feeling a bit delicate or you were working through some challenges prior. Picking up where you left off can feel like a lot; in order to keep yourself out of big-picture-what-if-this-happens-overwhelm, you need to bring your focus into the moment and focus on the details.
My go to’s (as I’ve been known to drum into you) are only going as far as the next good step and committing to showing up. Those two things work to keep me grounded whenever I get a case of the heebie-jeebies. Decide on a good start point to begin with and then exercise your superpower of showing up.
Let’s get this party (re)started.