Day 2

First things first, close your eyes and take three deep breaths to settle your nerves.

Hull, MA

Hull, MA

Mind Purge

I do this when I’m feeling too overwhelmed to function well. It works every time and even has some lasting effects I didn’t expect at first.

  1. Make a list of everything you are worried about. Write down as many things as you can in five minutes. This could include upcoming events, projects at work, household chores, or whatever is on your mind. Try to stick to phrases. Don’t worry about full sentences, grammar, punctuation, or spelling. Eliminate self-censorship. This process is the idea behind free writing.

  2. Review your list and ask yourself this question for each item you wrote down.

    SHORTER VERSION: Look at each item and think about what you’re already doing to work on it. Let yourself feel good about the progress you’ve already made. Then, set the list aside, take another deep breath and go back to your regular day or watch a little water action.

    LONGER VERSION: Can I do anything with or about this item? If yes, mark that item somehow and make any notes you find helpful regarding things like next steps you’ll need to take. If no, move on to the next item.

    Do I really need to do this? If yes, keep it. If no, cross is off. I like to draw a line through the whole thing for a more obvious effect.

    Could someone help me with this? (i.e. Am I willing to ask for help on this?) If yes, ask for help. If no, ask yourself why. If the answer is reasonable, however you define that, keep it on the list. Make a note of anyone you might need to ask for help.

    If after answering these questions you haven’t crossed anything off your list, take a good hard look at your list. Is it reasonable for one person to do all of this? Do I have an idea for how I could get it all done?

  3. Pull out any action items you’ve identified and choose two or three you could do quickly to get them off your list. Add the others to your existing system for tracking your To Do items. If you don’t have a formal way, make a list somewhere that makes sense for you. Ideally, you’ll also prioritize these items or set due dates for them. If these items are already on your work list, you’re all set.

  4. Move forward working through your list

  5. Keep this list even after everything is done. Come January, it could give you a boost to see all that you accomplished. Next year, this list might also help you plan your holidays even further ahead of time to reduce the frenzy.

Hull, MA

Hull, MA

Keep it or Toss it?