ID-100157605 (2)People tell me that they feel more over-stressed and overwhelmed than ever before. They have so much on their plates that they can’t find the time to do everything, let alone take time out to recover and refresh themselves.

They say that their usual solutions don’t work. They can’t find time to meditate, or exercise and even sleep properly. Life-work balance is a joke. No matter how hard they try, they seem to be achieving less and feel exhausted by demands at work and home.

Like them, are you also tired of being tired? If so, here are seven actions you can take right now to break out of this distressing cycle:

1.    Analyse what has to be done

Ask yourself:

  • At work, how much of what you are doing can only be done by you? Wouldn’t someone else welcome the opportunity to be trained to do some of what you are doing?
  • At home, is everyone pitching in and helping, or are you carrying more than your fair share? Couldn’t your loved ones take turns to do some of the things that you are doing?

What to do:

Write down all the things that you are doing. Then tick those that will matter three years from now. Now double tick the things that only you can do. Those are your real priorities (More here ).

2. Assess your over-commitments

Ask yourself:

  • Are you over-committed because you’re trying to be a superhero?
  • What would happen if you didn’t volunteer so often and didn’t do so much?

What to do:

Everyone loves superheroes, but the downside is that everyone ends up taking their effort and sacrifice for granted. Don’t make any new commitments unless you really have to. Get out of your least important commitments. You can do this gracefully, for example: “I really wanted to do this. Looking at my schedule however, I am way over committed and over-stressed. Can I help you find someone else to do it or can we find an alternate way it can be achieved?” (More here)

3.    Plan time for yourself

Ask yourself:

  • When was the last time you were happy and having fun? What were you doing and how did it feel?
  • Are you getting adequate sleep, exercise, nutrition and hydration?

What to do:

You need me-time or time-out for regeneration. Re-energising is a necessity; it’s not self-indulgence. So plan to use the time you have freed-up for fun activities that not only help you feel good, but also build your inner coping resources. (More here)

4.           Get rid of distractions

Ask yourself:

  • At work, what can you stop doing that isn’t giving you a good return on your time-investment — such as reading e-mails which you have been copied in on, and attending meetings which are not crucial to your job?
  • At home, what can you stop doing that doesn’t give you a good return on your time-investment — such as watching TV or following up on social media?

What to do:

To schedule time for yourself in your hectic schedule, you first have to stop something. Using your list of priorities, identify and get rid of the distractions that don’t contribute to achieving your priorities. (More here)

5. Change your interpretation of your stress

Ask yourself:

  • Do you fear your stress is impacting your health?
  • Are your thoughts more negative and pessimistic than is appropriate? Are you losing your perspective and life-balance?

What to do:

The way you think about stress influences how you experience it. Think of your stress as the motivation to make positive changes in your life. (More here)

6. Live in the moment

Ask yourself:

  • Are you so busy that your busyness has become addictive? Do you put off planning and reflecting on results, preferring the “rush” from busyness?
  • Do you strive for perfection rather than for results that are good enough? Are you chasing the mythical and self-defeating “110% effort”?

What to do:

Working harder only works to a point, and thereafter working harder limits focus and creativity. If working harder isn’t working for you, try using mindfulness techniques to live in the present. Mindfulness will reduce your reaction orientation and you will accomplish more. (More here)

7. Reduce time with people who drain your energy

Ask yourself:

  • Who is negative, brings you down and drains your energy?

What to do:

  • With the needy victims: politely disengage and don’t encourage them, saying: “I am sure you can solve this on your own.”
  • When your boss generates unnecessary work: say that you are willing to take on the project, but need to know which of your other assignments you can drop to make space.
  • With a loved one at home: decide whether it’s better to fight or to walk away. Let go of what you can’t change, unless it violates your values and safety. Put your energy into changing the things that you can change, but don’t expect the impossible. (More here)

In summary: struggling hard just to keep your head above water is no fun. Follow these seven actions, and soon you’ll have more energy and a more satisfying life.

Resilient Leadership WorkshopResilient Leadership Workshop
Leaders learn how to keep stress positive. They assess their Team Members strategy-fitness and learn three resilience coaching techniques. The outcome is the leaders are better able to deliver organisational strategy and coach their team members when their resilience lags (read more here).

Building Resilience workshop

Building Resilience Workshop

Team members and specialists learn how to bounce back from difficult organisation and life events, such as significant change, setbacks and hardship. The outcome is they are able to resist stressful experiences impacting on their job productivity and stay calm and healthy (read more here).

Mental Strength training

Mental Strength Training

Mental Strength training helps people keep task-focused and persistent. Mental Strength training teaches the process and tools to remain composed under pressure and less vulnerable to emotional slumps at work and at home (read more here).

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at