Overwhelmed Part 1: Plan for it

This past February marked 10 years of being in paid ministry.  Over the past 10 years, I have had several moments where I said, “I wished someone would have told me before I got into ministry.”  I had all these crazy thoughts and beliefs about ministry until I actually got into ministry.  One of those beliefs was that summer would be a slow season with a lot of opportunities to connect with students, get ahead on planning for the school year, and have time to myself. 

If I am being honest, I have never had time for any of that stuff during the summer.  The summer is probably one of the most overwhelming seasons outside of Christmas. It has often left me completely overwhelmed during a time when I thought I was going to be able to recalibrate and get physically, spiritually, and mentally refreshed.  

Have you ever been overwhelmed by something? Perhaps for you, it isn’t a season but it is a particular day, month, or year.  It might even be a place that overwhelms you or a person.  For the next few posts, I want to outline some of the tools and tips I use to help cut down the pressure and the feeling overwhelmed.  I understand this is not a fix-all for everyone but it does seem to help me.  It is possible this might help you too.  

My biggest help when I am going through a really busy season is to spend more time on planning and preparing for my week, month, or bigger tasks.  I get crazy about making sure my calendar is as detailed as possible. I make lists of all the projects I have to do and I even break those tasks into small to-do lists.  I am a very visual person and to see it all laid out helps me.  There is nothing I love more than being able to CHECK OFF an item on my to-do list. 

SO SATISFYING. 

I know if the list is too big it can be overwhelming.  If that is an issue, which it has been in the past, I break it down into smaller lists on several sheets of paper.  This listing concept helps me capture all the work that needs to be done and see it in a more manageable format.  

If you are completely overwhelmed take a little more time on planning the busyness and getting ahead of it.  This puts the control of your schedule back in your hands, rather than your schedule controlling you.  I highly recommend that you make sure to schedule break times and time for rest too.  If you don’t then it won’t happen.  

Hope this helps you with managing those overwhelming seasons of busyness.  

Have a great week. Love MORE and do MORE for others.