The Disney film, Finding Nimo, has some sayings that have stuck with me after having watched it all those years ago. I am a lot like Dorie, optimistic; friendly; and I love people (although I guess Dorie loved sea creatures). Do you remember that part of the movie where she keeps saying, “Just keep swimming!” ?
Well, right now I am feeling like I am not swimming all that well. In fact, I feel like I am barely doggy paddling. Are you feeling like this at all? STOP! Don’t do another thing until you take some “life saving” steps.
Stay Calm I heard this is the first thing you should do when you feel like you are drowning. I haven’t found it to be productive to be rushing around since I discover that after I have done that I am no further along than if I just took a few minutes to stop and quiet myself.
Pray Have you taken the time to say, “Help God!” You’d probably say more, but it’s okay if that is all you can do at the moment. You’d be surprised what a few minutes of prayer can do to your attitude and outlook.
Make a List of all the things you have to do. When I have a dark cloud or a line of them sometimes, I find it is easier for me to dispel that overwhelmed feeling by writing down all I need to accomplish. Write ALL of them down first, in no particular order, just whatever comes to mind. Now, go back and put the ones items that need to be done now at the top of the list and move down until you have all of them in order of due date. If you are better at this than me you can do that as you write them down the first time-saving you extra time. Are there some things you can consolidate or put off for another time? For instance, I wanted to drop off books that I was no longer using to a co-op I was a part of and was trying to think of a way I was going to do that. A friend found out and volunteered to take them for me instead. At first I was thinking that I had to do that since they were my books,but then I realized how ridiculous that was and why not have her do that for me? It freed up my time to get something else accomplished.
Check off as you go! This gives me a great sense of accomplishment and helps keep me on track. I must admit though, I have been known to add to my to-do list after the fact and then cross it off.
Make time for yourself There, I said it. Do something just for yourself! Take time to get recharged. It will greatly increase your energy and willingness to get those items checked off your list. I find myself resenting everything I have to do and everyone I serve when I don’t take some time out for myself. I think it is worth the investment for some “me time”. Set the timer for 30 minutes if you are really pressed to get things done. Better still, why not go all out and call a friend to go get a coffee with you?
Guess what? I gotta run! I am off to complete a task that is on my to-do list. Enjoy your day and just keep swimming.