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When You’re Drowning in Tasks, Overwhelm & Stress : zen habits

Teach yourself how to better enjoy your stressful days

You decide on how you experience your day, that is one thing we are all well aware of. So why not choosing to fulfill one task at a time, to focus on one person or challenge at a time? Take things easier and enjoy all the moments your life is made up of.

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When You’re Drowning in Tasks, Overwhelm & Stress : zen habits

When You’re Drowning in Tasks, Overwhelm & Stress : zen habits

https://zenhabits.net/drowning/

zenhabits.net

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Key Ideas

Dealing with too much stress

When dealing with too much stress to the point that you feel overwhelmed, try focusing on the idea that this is a reality which yourself you might have created. True or not, think next to the fact that we create our own reality. Therefore, imagine another one, which is calmer and which allows you to do your tasks one at a time.

Steps to start feeling better

When feeling overwhelmed, try some steps in order to feel better, such as the below ones:
Try to rest your mind, even for a few minutes at a time
Make a list that contains three most important tasks that have to be accomplished and focused on them before solving everything else that is less important

Teach yourself how to better enjoy your stressful days

You decide on how you experience your day, that is one thing we are all well aware of. So why not choosing to fulfill one task at a time, to focus on one person or challenge at a time? Take things easier and enjoy all the moments your life is made up of.

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Set intentions when starting the day

When you start your day, or any meaningful activity, ask what your intentions are for the day or that activity. Do you want to be more present? Do you want to move your mission forward? Do you want...

Prioritize and focus

To create space for what is meaningful, focus on important tasks. Pick just 3 (or even just 1) and focus on that first. Put aside everything else (you can come back to all that later) and create space for what’s meaningful in your life.

One activity at a time

If you’re going to write, close all other tabs and just write. If you’re going to brush your teeth, just do that. If the activity is important enough to include in the limited container of your life, it’s important enough to give it your full focus. 

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The lack of true rest

The lack of true rest

It drains us out of our energy to the point where we're never fully present, fully alive in the moment.

And this could have negative consequences on many level of our ...

What true rest looks like

A few ways to rest that feel very replenishing:

  • Closing your eyes, lying down, and doing nothing.
  • Going outside without using a device.
  • Relaxing with someone else. Feeling connection with them.
  • Being fully present with a simple activity, like drinking coffee.
  • Playing music, creating art, dancing etc.

How to relax

You can relax while doing something (having a bath, a cup of coffee etc.) You don’t have to be lying down, with your eyes closed.

The key is to make this the one thing that you’re doing. Be all in with this task, instead of jumping around.

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The fragile, non-resilient approach to change

The fragile, non-resilient approach to change

The problem when we try to change make changes in our lives:

  • We set out to do something regularly (for example, exercise, meditate or write something)
  • We fail at it
  • ...

The idea of anti-fragility

It comes from Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s book Black Swan. The main idea is that many human-made systems are fragile. Something comes to stress the system, and it falls apart. Some systems are robust or resilient, which is much better than fragile.

Even better is the idea of being anti-fragile: stress makes the system stronger.

Failure helps systems get stronger

We can make human-made systems more anti-fragile by designing ways that stress will make the system better able to handle stress.

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