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We had some friends over on Saturday. They took Mom and Dad out to lunch. When they got back, we all congregated in the living room and talked about all kinds of things. One of the topics was overwhelm and a lack of time. Interestingly, we all came to the conclusion that taking a complex set of tasks and reducing that down was the best option. When you do that, time decompresses.

Think about the last overwhelming task you had to do. How long did you procrastinate because you did not know where to start. With each moment of procrastination, the pressure increases, and you begin to think you have no time to do anything. This is the time to decompress time by pulling apart that big project, whittling it down to individual tasks, and attacking those individual tasks one-by-one.

When you begin knocking out these little tasks, the bigger task they are a part of begins to get easier. You begin to see how the project will be finished. This occurs when you can break it up into smaller tasks. The project is no longer daunting. It is simply a collection of small tasks that must be completed in a particular order.

Steps

Look at your project

What has to happen to finish it

What phone calls, people, places, and materials are involved?

Make a list of every single thing you can think of to get this project completed.

Each “single thing” are the tasks you have to complete in order to finish the project

If you run across a “single thing” that is still too complex to deal with, break that down too!

Once you have all these things written down, take some time to organize these tasks by time and category.

What tasks have to happen first?

Once you come up with a semblance of order, begin to knock out these tasks

Re-evaluate

If you take the time to do this, you’ll find your “big” projects are just a collection of little tasks–tasks that are done easily and without any stress. Take the time to go through this exercise, particularly when you get the feeling of overwhelm. You’ll find that this exercise simplifies the project, and will help you overcome feelings of overwhelm.

I hope all of you are having a great day! Here’s to Monday!

Until next time…

Dave