Handling Overload

There may be phases in your life when personal time is too short. Personal wants may come last or feel like they are on hold. You may struggle to get in basic self-care. Hopefully these times are not long-lasting or frequent. If you find yourself in a career where it is the norm, strongly consider shifting course. The toll a work-heavy lifestyle takes on an individual and her family is significant. Your health, relationships, satisfaction, and more can suffer. You may work long, late hours, or travel for work much of the time. Yet you still have a household to maintain. If you have a partner or family, tend to it with more than a minimum amount of time and energy. If you do not have a family but desire it, invest effort and time into trying to make space and conditions for it.

How to get it all done when you are overloaded and there is no option to cut back? One of our experts advised how she did it all when working full time with an infant (who is now in college). “Take shortcuts. Wear the same socks. No one will know you wore them yesterday.” A simple yet helpful message. Do what works for you and do not aim for perfection.

Many people recommend letting little things go. This depends on how you define little things. Leaving the home messy does not work for some of us if our systems fall apart, for example if we can’t find phone chargers, clean clothes, or other essentials needed to run a smooth workweek. Straightening up, even when exhausted, can help one feel more calm and in control. Scrambling around and then being late because of a scattered environment is not efficient. A clean home can be a comfort, especially when everything else feels out of control. Everyone is different, and there may be times to let it all go. Observe what works for you.