Life has so much to offer us with many wonderful activities to be a part of. However, between work, kids, their activities, our hobbies, volunteering, sports, and leisure, it is easy to take on too much. Before we know it, we are constantly on the go without a moment to ourselves. Oftentimes, we find ourselves in a position that we have bitten off more than we can chew leaving us feel completely overwhelmed. It’s important to simplify your life to focus on what’s important.
Simplify Your Life
We may find that all of these things we have taken on have some benefit. However, if we are finding ourselves more stressed or with no time for ourselves, then it may be time to start cut back. How do we decide the things have the most value to keep on our activity list? Here are some suggestions to help you make those important decisions.
Decide on Your Priorities
Although you may be doing something that is rewarding, it doesn’t necessarily mean that now is the right time to be taking that particular activity on. For instance, perhaps you are volunteering your time at church, with a charity, or on the PTO at your children’s school. If this activity is causing you to feel more stress, perhaps right now is not the best time to be involved. There was a point when I was volunteering in the Children’s Ministry at our church. Each Sunday, when it was my turn, I would feel a sense of dread and stress. Then I would feel guilty for having those feelings of dread and stress. I knew they really needed the help, but on the other hand I really needed that time to be about me and God. Still having young children myself, made me realize that being with young children again on the weekends made me realize I wasn’t giving myself the break I needed. I felt such an incredible sense of relief when I finally did give my notice of no longer being able to serve in the ministry.
A few months later I was asked to serve the church in a different capacity. One in which I could still be in the church during service, but also help in a way that more appropriate to where I was in my life, and still am! I currently help out with media during the service, running the words to the songs during Worship and Bible scripture during the Sermon.
No matter how much value your commitment is contributing to a cause you are passionate about, decide if, for this moment in your life, it is at the top of your priority list. If not, find a way to either scale back, a different way to serve, or cut it out completely for now. More than likely, there will a different way to serve that suits you better, or you will be able to pick up that commitment again when it fits better in your life.
Follow Your Intuition
If you want a quick way to decide whether you are able to take on another project, pay attention to your gut feeling. When asked to take on something new, is your gut saying no while you start to go into a slight panic mode? Or, are you just feeling excited and able to see the future possibilities? As much as you may want to take on this project, it is wiser to go with your intuition. Allow your intuition to be a source of guidance to dissuade you from taking on projects that will lead to stress.
What if there is a new project or cause that you feel passionate for, but you really don’t have the time? These are things that you may want to consider a way to that would allow you to still do this project in some capacity without taking up all of your time. Is there a way to split the job with one or more people, or maybe it can wait until your schedule has a little more flexibility. In any case, there are almost always ways to make a commitment more manageable.
Say No Sometimes, Even When You Want to Say Yes
Although you may have a lot of interests, and believe in many causes, there is only so much time in each day. If you find yourself leaping enthusiastically into role after role that seems perfectly cut out for you, slow down. Put things back into perspective and choose only what you feel absolutely compelled to do. Cut out the rest, and take some time to focus before taking on any more.
Too often, we feel that we must become a superhero of sorts and commit ourselves to a breaking point. Being overcommitted doesn’t benefit anyone. We will only cause undue stress to ourselves and others, plus we will be unable to give any of our projects our best. Choose your priorities and make a decision to be involved only in a few choice activities, instead of overcommitted.
Do you find yourself taking on too much?
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