Have you ever found yourself spending a lot of time worrying about things that are beyond your control? Or perhaps you spend a lot of time trying to be a perfectionist in every area of your life? Are you feeling stuck or overwhelmed at home, work, or school? I'm here to tell you today that the reason you are probably feeling overwhelmed and burned out is that you're spending far too much of your time and energy doing things that don't matter.
Here are a couple of questions that can help guide you to determine whether the circumstance you are faced with today is worth the trouble:
1. Is what I'm doing right now getting me closer to my personal or professional goals?
2. Will this current circumstance have any impact on my life five years from now?
3. Am I willing to let go of things that don't serve me today? If not, why?
4. What is the purpose of my actions NOW?
The next time you are struggling with a predicament, step away from the chaos. Yes, literally go into another room, or even the restroom for extra privacy and ask yourself those questions repeatedly. You may not get an immediate answer, but placing the questions to the forefront of your mind will allow your brain the realign with your main purpose and provide you with clarity.
Once you have answers to your questions it would be helpful to spend some time journaling about the process and answers your brain provides to you. Now, keep in mind that if you're a perfectionist you may become a bit frustrated that the answers you get will not flow chronologically to what you're trying to resolve. I want to encourage you to keep writing. For those who are not a fan of writing your thoughts down, open a recorder app on your phone either in Evernote, OneNote, Google Docs, anything and just talk it out. Once you have everything on paper or in voice notes review the questions once more when you are in a quiet and uninterrupted space.
Next, pick one recurring theme or thing that encompasses all the answers to the questions you reviewed. Journal or voice record why that one thing matters most to you at this very moment. This is typically easier when writing it out as a list. Once you have a clear vision of why this one thing holds more value than everything else happening during the time you are feeling most stressed or overwhelmed, it's time to move on to the final step.
Get rid of everything else. This step may be the most difficult if you have a tendency of not delegating tasks to others or may not have the option to do so. But, it is the most important step because it will ultimately help you to remove the things that do not matter in your life and focus on the things that do. Getting rid of everything could also mean you say "NO" to things that do not add value to your day or time and "Yes" to those that do. Reconsidering your commitments will set you free from things that do not matter.
I want to hear from you.
Join the conversation below by sharing the way you have shifted away from things that do not matter to the things that do. How did you decide what to keep and what to eliminate? Do you have a process similar to the one shared in this post? What is one thing you would truly like to stop caring about today?