Before I started writing this, I said, “Nyssa, you have no children. You don’t have a full time, corporate job. You don’t have pushy family members. You don’t go to school. Your schedule is fine.”
And I said, “Well, Nyssa, you used to have all those things, minus the children, but you survived and many people might be able to use that past experience. Also, you have new things that take up all your time.”
And then I said, “Nyssa, why are you talking to yourself?”
Carry not only a Planner, but a Brain Dump Notebook
As we go about our lives, we are flooded with information. We learn things. We have randomly appearing ideas. We have thoughts and feelings. And sometimes, it can be overwhelming.
Planners are helpful. It lets you know when you are free and when you are not. I’m not going to tell you what kind of planner to use as everyone is different. It can be digital or physical. You can plan by the month, week, day, hour, etc. Whatever works. Personally, I plan by the day using a combination of an online calendar app and a bullet journal, but again, these are the things that help me stay organized, but promoting them is an article for another day. The point is, have some sort of Planner so you know what your days, weeks, and months look like.
Now that piece of advice is pretty common. Everyone is going to tell you to have a planner. Now, here is what I have to add to it: Have a place to brain dump. This is a place you aren't afraid to be messy with no urges to be pretty. Again, it doesn’t matter if this is digital or physical, but have a place to brain dump.
The point of the brain dump is to get out the clutter of the brain so you can focus on what is important.
Give Yourself A Break
If you are the kind of person who makes their schedule so stressful that they need to read a blog article to try to get their life back together, chances are that you need a break.
And that’s okay.
I’m no doctor or biologist, but from personal experience, you need to let your body and mind rest. You can only go so long before you crash. And you don’t want to crash. That’s not fun. It leads to irritability and illness.
If you have a career that will give you some holidays, take one, especially right after a large stressor event. I always took a day off of work when I’m doing community theatre. And now, I let myself rest the day after and don’t stress over my novel or blog.
If you don’t have that luxury, see where you can cut in some time just for some self love. Go to a massus or get your nails done. Maybe go to the movies with friends or have a sit in day with family. Take an evening to play video games or board games. Whatever helps you unwind and chill, do that.
And when you are living in one of your break periods that you specifically assigned to recoup, do not get mad at yourself over it. When your brian tells you things like “You are wasting time,” “This isn’t productive,” “You don’t deserve this,” and so on, ignore those thoughts. Tell those thoughts to shove off. You don’t need that negativity and you aren’t wasting time taking care of yourself. You are being productive by getting some self-care, and you do deserve this.
My Number 1 Advice. Say “No.”
Seriously. Say “No.”
And it can be difficult. Someone you like asks for help and you don’t want to disappoint them. Or you need to suck up to an authority figure, so you have to help them. Or someone asks you to your face to do something and you don’t want to start a conflict.
But you will alleviate so much stress when you learn to tell people “No.”
And you don’t have to find an excuse. “I have a family reunion.” “My aunt passed away.” “I have to shampoo my hair.” “I’m repainting the bedroom.” You don’t need any of that. Your “excuse” can literally be “I don’t want to.”
It is a scenario by scenario basis, but saying “no” to things that you don’t want or need to do will make you feel so much better and will free up your schedule more than you would think.