As we head into the later part of the year, I always find life gets a little more hectic, or dare I even say, busy.
There just seems to be the constant feeling of unfinished business, although sometimes I’m not exactly sure what it is.
I’m often unable to totally switch off because of a niggling feeling that there is something else I need to do, if only I could put my finger on exactly what that something is.
My planner is exploding with appointments, to do lists and wish lists. The end of my kitchen bench is full of papers from school, the latest supermarket catalogue for this week’s meal planning inspiration as well as anything else that needs to be taken care of.
Last week, with my mind, my planner and my kitchen bench feeling in complete disarray, I decided it was time to reduce the overwhelm.
So far I have taken three simple steps…
1.. My first step was to unsubscribe from some of the many emails that drop into my inbox but I often never look at.
To start with, I deleted the job seeking emails I have continued to receive since making the decision to leave behind my career to spend more time with my family. That was three years ago and I honestly don’t know why I haven’t done this earlier.
So I have unsubscribed from about SIX different job searches I had set up. For some reason, until now, I just couldn’t totally let go, even though I tended to only give these emails a cursory glance, if any, then do a bulk delete until the next round came in the following day. But no more, they are gone and gosh it is so freaking awesome to check my inbox and not be greeted with a stack unwanted emails.
Now that I have started, I plan to continue doing the same with any other emails subscriptions I have put my name down for over the years but no longer read or relate to anymore.
2.. On the weekend, I also cleared out all the ‘clutter’ that had been kicking around at the back of my planner. Little notes and bits of paper that I no longer need. Past prescriptions that were either out of date or no longer required. There was just so much ‘stuff’ I have kept hold of and, while they obviously meant something to me at the time, I now longer need (or want) it. And if it was something important, then I made a list using the notes section at the back of my planner.
As I sat down on Sunday night to fill out the week’s upcoming events and to do list, it felt so much better to do so in a planner that was no longer bulging or overflowing.
3.. Finally, I have been making a concerted effort at reducing the amount of time I spend on social media, both personally and for my blog. So much so, I actually received a message from Facebook the other day reminding me that my followers hadn’t heard from me in a while and maybe I should consider posting something. Well, thanks for your concern and checking in with me Facebook, but instead of stressing, planning and telling myself that I must post something to social media every single day, several times a day I have decided to only do it when I feel I have something important to share with my readers and followers. Maybe it’s not the best decision from a ‘business’ perspective, a great way to build a social media following or increase engagement, but in some ways I hope the existing followers I already have will appreciate only seeing news or photos when it’s something truly interesting to me, instead of being bombarded with post after post just for the sake of keeping up with the never-ending buzz of social media or working around its crazy algorithms.
Similarly to my emails, I also plan to start unfollowing pages that aren’t relevant to me anymore in an attempt to clean up my own personal newsfeed.
For now, that’s where I’m at … I’m sure there’s more to be done, but I know it’s a gradual process that will take time. It’s also a step forward in the practices I have already put in place to create a simpler, less stressful lifestyle for me and my family. If you’re interested in this, you can read more about my personal decision to ‘go slow’ here and some of my ideas for incorporating simple living ideas into my family’s lifestyle here.
How do you deal with overwhelm? Have you ever tried a digital detox?