How have you been? I hope you’ve had a good week and that any of you with children back at school are enjoying a bit more routine and they’re settling in ok.
Eva is absolutely loving it, whilst simultaneously being shattered and eating constantly from after school to bedtime! 😂
Here I am rocking the outdoor cooking on holiday, complete with tunes and rosé!
I returned to 453 work emails, a diary full of client calls, Eva starting back at school, our financial accounts being due – oh and the small matter of me relaunching my group course this weekend which requires a massive load of tech work and content writing – ooof!!!!!
As we drove back from Folkstone to Devon, I had a few hours to contemplate this impending feeling and think about how I could surf the wave instead of be engulfed by it.
What I’ve learned from my own coaches in the last 2 years is that overwhelm is a choice.
That might sound ridiculous as all those things are very real and need doing etc. and yet how we approach it mentally, what we tell ourselves about it and how we experience moving through multiple plate-spinning is a choice.
We get what we focus on, so if my mind-talk is constantly affirming, “argh, there’s not enough time, I’m going to feel overwhelmed, how is that all going to get done? What if it doesn’t get done? I don’t want to feel so overwhelmed etc.” then our focus is totally on the feeling of being overwhelmed and then, guess what? We experience feeling overwhelmed.
There’s often a sneaky part of us however that is actually quite addicted to being ‘busy’ and having lots to do or being in constantly-actioning mode.
Being still or slowing down means experiencing any negative feelings or worries we may have.
It means experiencing any resistant thoughts we have about making changes we would benefit from making, especially if you aren’t sure on the way forward with something or how to approach it, or you’re fearful about the outcome or your ability to make the change.
So we remain absolutely rammed to the gunwales with ‘stuff’ to do, urgency and always feeling that ‘there isn’t enough time’.
This is how we unconsciously, and without meaning to, keep actively choosing overwhelm, even though we hate it and don’t enjoy it.
We also tend to put ourselves down the priority list and aren’t getting ourselves set up to be in receiving mode.
What I mean by that is that we may be verbally saying “I would like to receive more income, or have better health or more time with the family” but our actions and choices don’t support that. We don’t honour ourselves or feel that we deserve to receive those things.
Or we let fear of how we might be perceived, or other people’s priorities and needs in front of our own consistently.
I know where that road leads to. Burnout. I very nearly forgot that last winter when I was working towards the initial launch of the group coaching course and this winter, I plan to learn and do it differently.
my autumn manifesto
So what does NOT choosing overwhelm, even in the face of an enormous mountain of tasks, look like?
I’ll share my Autumn manifesto with you and hope it inspires you to create your own.
Pledge Number One
Simplify, cut back, say no, drop non-essential things. I ALWAYS start here with clients. The first module on my 6-month signature course the Map Maker Experience is Time & Energy management for that exact reason.
For me that means staying out of people-pleasing mode as I’ve got about 20-odd requests at the moment for potential collaborations, podcasts, article writing, speaking etc. and I will need to say no to most of them which is uncomfortable for me!
But I’ll do it as my time and self-care is so precious and I refuse to choose burnout.
Pledge Number Two
Look at what you’re putting into your body. Food really is like medicine, and what we eat and drink affects everything including the biggies like energy levels, sleep, mood and weight.
This year with the pandemic, I’ve been feeling less able to stick to my normal healthy eating goals and I’ve been fine with that. But long term I need to get back on track.
Hello healthy 21 day detox and kale smoothies for breakfast!
I’m doing Clean Gut by Alejandro Junger and actually really enjoying it. Are there any small tweaks you could make to your diet right now that might help support your body and sleep better?
Pledge Number Three
Declutter your physical environment.
I have a beautiful deck of oracle cards I use as a self-reflection and journaling tool, and this reminds me of the Autumn one.
With this card, it talks about releasing all the pressure and expectation weighing you down. Just as autumn is the time when the trees are preparing for the long cold winter and must let go of all the weight they are carrying in order to continue to grow and prosper.
For me at the moment, this means using some time each weekend to look at my home space with fresh eyes and looking at what I can let go of and release.
Are there piles of clutter in many corners?
Things you’ve been meaning to sort for ages but just don’t really see any more?
Half-finished DIY projects?
Even just tackling one or two of these areas can bring a fresh sense of energy and letting go of old stuff we don’t really need is a good exercise!
Louise Littler over at the Veterinary Life Organisation Group, now renamed to Life Organisation Group, is running a fantastic free decluttering challenge in October for anyone who’s interested.
Pledge Number Four
Make a different choice to overwhelm. Even just saying out loud to yourself when you feel the sense of panic rising, “nope! I choose to know there is enough time, it will somehow all squidge in”.
We talk about stretchy-time in our house and weirdly it often works! Gay Hendricks, in his fantastic book The Big Leap, talks about ‘Einstein time’ and explains the theory on how to literally create the time you need for stuff.
Relax your standards, allow yourself to be scrappy, messy and imperfect as perfect is the enemy of ‘done’.
This was my (hugely successful 6-figure earning) coach’s advice about my course re-launch.
Rather than waiting to try and perfect every last detail before launching, just get it out there so people can start benefiting it, and tweak and perfect it over the coming months as we know it already works well and delivers great results for people.
Pledge Number Five
Book in and ringfence your self care right now. You need to take care of you. You need to empty your own cup and replenish yourself in order to keep giving to everyone else. Consistently not doing that again leads to exhaustion, low mood and burnout.
Take the post-it note off your forehead that says, “Please like me!” and stick it on the mirror.
You matter too!
For me this means taking time every morning for meditation (15 mins in bed next to Eva watching ipad with her earphones in), yoga and running a couple of times a week.
It means a non-negotiable 15mins in the bath with the door locked every evening with a good book or podcast.
It means booking in a few sessions of bi-aura healing (don’t ask, all a bit hippy but I’m down with that 😉) and a nice haircut.
What’s on your list? Guilt-free please as well. You have been told! 💗
Pledge Number Six
Are you feeling an urge now too for a bit of an Autumn reset
Maybe you’re already doing something similar. If so, get in touch and tell me what you’re doing – I’d love some more ideas to add to this list and always enjoy getting feedback from you.
P.S. Doors are opening for reserving your place on my group coaching program and my free Masterclass on How to Master your #vetpassport is now available – yay! Click here if you’d like to find out more.
I’m fully booked at the moment with one-to-one coaching in September but have spaces available for October if you’d really like to supercharge your own Autumn manifesto. 🤩