Planning for Success

Tools: how to be more productive when you are feeling overwhelmed

We are all familiar with the uncomfortable feeling of anxiety and stress when we have a lot on our plate. These feelings can sometimes become so intense that we don’t know what to do or how to move forward.

This is called being overwhelmed and it is a very exhausting feeling to experience – especially as a business owner. Here are some of the signs that you may be overwhelmed:

●     Having trouble concentrating and completing easy tasks

●     Feeling more tired than usual

●     Overreacting to situations

●     Easily distracted and can’t keep focus

●     Withdrawing from others

Feeling overwhelmed with your business can be doubly stressful because you likely have other people relying on you, or you have firm deadlines to meet, and there is no space or time to feel overwhelmed.

That’s why learning some simple strategies to change your mindset from an overwhelmed state to a state of productivity is so valuable.

Here are some quick tips you can do right NOW to help you feel less overwhelmed:

  • Turn off notifications – It can seem like somebody always wants something from you which can be stressful. Just turn them off for a day.
  • Consciously stay on task – Tell yourself that you must stay on task for a certain amount of time and stick to it.
  • Eliminate distractions – Close those other tabs in your browser!
  • Update your client base – Get rid of people who are simply sucking your time.
  • Take time out – Don’t feel guilty about taking some time out to think and recharge. It’s an important part of mental health.

“Either run the day or the day runs you.”

Jim Rohn

If you seriously want to eliminate feelings of being overwhelmed and distracted then the following 3 mindset activities can help you.

  1. The Achiever Matrix: This model is made up of 4 quadrants to help you manage your tasks more efficiently, use your time more effectively, and keep you organised. The 4 categories are:
  • Important, Urgent (The quadrant of urgency) These are pressing tasks which must be dealt with immediately. Often these tasks become urgent due to a lack of good planning.
  • Important, Not Urgent (The quadrant of quality) These tasks are ongoing and relate to planning, management, minimising problems, and building skills. This is where most of your time should be spent.
  • Not Important, Urgent (The Quadrant of deception) Often these tasks are important to others and serve as a distraction from our personal goals.
  • Not Important, Not Urgent (The quadrant of waste) This is where we procrastinate, get distracted, and waste time. It’s best to spend as little time in this quadrant as possible.
  1. The Productivity Pyramid: This is a 5-tier pyramid structure that organises your use of time to maximise your rewards. The base of the pyramid, or first tier, is where you spend the most time. As you work higher up the pyramid, you will generate the highest return for the least amount of time invested. These are the 5 tiers, starting from the base of the pyramid:
  • Improve – get better at the work you are doing
  • Increase – get more people to do your work for you
  • Invest – buy technology to scale
  • Invent – Invent a system or technology
  • Innovate – work on better things
  1. Atomic Habits: This mindset looks at your habits and how they affect your productivity, happiness, and success. Habits are small decisions we make every day that result in certain outcomes. We can distinguish our habits into 2 categories, outcome-based habits and identity-based habits. Building more identity-based habits is preferable because they will develop the person you want to become and build a positive identity.
  • Outcome-based – decide on the results you want > take action > your beliefs about yourself get in the way > feel badly about yourself.
  • Identity-based – decide the type of person you want to be > actions based on what that person would do > show that you are that type of person > feel good about yourself > repeat

These are some practical concepts that you can work into your life to help combat feelings of being overwhelmed and frustrated, and having a lack of control in your life. Identifying what’s important, learning to focus, and focussing on positive action will help you to feel better about who you are as a person, and how you manage your business.

Are you feeling overwhelmed and need some help?

If you are feeling overwhelmed and need to take some weight off your shoulders, then sign up for our mentoring packages. Our Quarterly or Monthly Coaching service provides you with increased accountability and support so that you achieve the results you want from your business. We will eliminate all your confusion and make the process simple and easy to understand.

We are experienced bookkeepers, accountants, and tax agents who can help you with all of your tax questions. Get in touch with us today.