Do you ever find yourself getting ready for bed and suddenly feeling like your busy day was a blur and you’re not sure where it went? Or maybe you have a To Do List that’s a mile long … and deadlines around the corner …. and 2 kids in need of costumes for the school play … and … you get the picture!
Does overwhelm get the upper hand? Do you start feeling unfocused and without a clue about where to start? Feel like you’re paralyzed in those headlights that are barreling toward you?
This is ripe ground for self-sabotage, because we feel stressed, and a part of us would like to flee.
So it’s really important to be on the lookout for that small, soothing-sounding voice that invites you to relax a little … maybe surf the net … or turn on the TV … anything to escape the overwhelm.
Don’t trust it! In fact, the best thing you can do, when you recognize that tempting tone, is to assert yourself and say a resounding “No.”
You see, we often think of assertiveness as a skill that we need to learn to use with others. And there’s no doubt that that’s very important. However, at base assertiveness is a skill that starts and ends with ourselves. Setting goals, making plans, creating time boundaries – these all require assertiveness with ourselves, first and foremost, if we’re to follow-through and accomplish whatever we set out to do.
When I was recently interviewed by our local newspaper, the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript, I spoke to this point:
We sabotage ourselves. Everybody does that,” said Eder, explaining that there are literally a million ways people spend unproductive hours every day. Whether its surfing the Internet or clicking around all the channels on TV, or even picking up the phone when it would be better to continue on the task at hand, “We’re not learning to say, No.” She said that in most cases it’s an assertiveness issue …
That’s not to say that you shouldn’t give yourself breaks. What’s fundamentally important is that whatever you do, it come from your clear, adult choices – not from self sabotage. When you are listening to the adult voice inside, you will find that you know where your time went. You may not accomplish everything you set out to, but you are likely to feel good about what you did.
Are you inspired to find time and increase your effectiveness? I invite you to explore Secrets of Heart-Based Time Management – my chapter in the book I co-authored – Stepping Stones to Success!
© Copyright 2011 Paula Eder, Ph.D.