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Dealing with stress and task overwhelm for creative founders

dealing with stress and overwhelm creative founders
It’s the time of the year when things in our businesses can get quite hectic. The festive season is upon us while economic uncertainty is still up in the air. This adds even more pressure on us to deliver the sales targets we need to carry us over into the next year. If you’re a creative mind, you may not cope with pressure and overwhelm very well. You find relief in your own world, your safe place where you don’t have to think about anything else than just creating. There is a lot of advice on dealing with stress and pressures, and of course, your coping mechanism is very individual.

Over the years I tried many things; trying to keep calm and practising mindfulness. When it comes to task overwhelm what really helped me most is taking control of my time. Time management is an important skill for life as well as your business. We, women, are multitakers and sometimes we forget that we just can’t do it all. Recently I came across a post on Instagram about “monotasking”. Have you heard of it? Monotasking is the practice of focusing on one specific task at a time to maximise productivity while minimising interruptions.

This is what I do:

1. Close my Mail (inbox) completely. 
Emails can wait.

2. Put the iphone out of sight / the office. 
The biggest distraction of modern time.

3. Take a regular break. 
That’s why modern tech companies encourage employees to have a rest after a sprint.

4. Allocate work to others while focusing on things I’m good at. 
This was a gamechanger for me. Recognise where you spend most of your time and where you can make most difference. As David Allen said, “You can do anything but not everything.”

5. Go for a walk or change the scenery.
Always calms me down and sparks ideas. As David Hieatt* said, “Sometimes the best way to have ideas is to be thinking of something else.” It works for me.

Pressures, stresses and problems can be manageable if we recognise them and ask for help. Some things we can control better than others but they are always solvable. Personally, once I start to see the end of the tunnel, I seem to relax.

Life is too short for worries about small things. Let’s see the bigger picture. Let’s build our resilience while overcoming pressures and keep moving forward.

*I highly recommend his book DO/PURPOSE available on Amazon.