Have you ever had this experience? You’re faced with so many things that have to be done in a timely manner that it overwhelms you… so all you do is nothing! Well, that is, almost nothing. You do manage to:
Worry yourself sick about how you’ll get everything done.
Eat or snack until you feel drowsy.
Take several naps hoping to awaken inspired.
Reorganize your papers and desk drawers as part of your plan of attack.
Worry about all of the time you know you’ve wasted making plans and reorganizing your desk.
If you’re tired of finding yourself exhausted — even before you’re able to start working on some line of tasks assembled before you — the following insights and prescribed actions are custom-made for you. They will lend just the help you need to succeed in handling a hundred pressing jobs; all while enjoying that inner calm and confidence that comes with knowing that you’re not only doing all that can be done, but you’re doing it in the best manner!
At any given moment, regardless of appearance or any emotional certainty to the contrary, it is not the demand of those already-overdue, one-hundred-and-one tasks that have you feeling so overwhelmed and under prepared. What you’re really experiencing is the overwhelming presence of one thought. One thought that calls itself “one-hundred-and-one things to do.”
The next time you “hear” this inner voice of imminent doom, listen instead to this higher instruction: Never again look for a way out of any anxious condition. Look instead for a way to see through it.
Now learn the higher techniques that will show you how to be a self-starting individual instead of a self-stalling one.
Each time you’re faced with a logjam of tasks that seem far beyond your mortal abilities to resolve in the allotted time, here’s what to do. First, whittle these logs down to manageable size by writing each one out on a pad of paper. This act will also help you untangle some of your own tangled feelings about the jam you’re in. For now, forget their order of importance; that will become clear later. Just get each task down on paper. Besides, your priorities can only be as clear as your thinking, so making this list helps to clarify both. Another benefit of your list is that it will keep confusion out of the picture, and confusion is to anxiety what wind is to
a dust devil.
Once you have your list of tasks written down on paper, place a star next to number one on your list. Then do it! Take number one on your list and just get that one thing done. Consciously refuse to entertain any other thoughts that push themselves into your mind with images of impossibility. It is possible to do one thing at a time. And it is possible to successfully complete one thing at a time, and to do that one thing to the very best of your ability.
Then… move onto the next task at hand: number two. Follow the same winning procedure as you did with number one. Then do number three and so on until all is done.
The main lesson here is that it only becomes impossible to succeed when you try to deal with what isn’t in your power. There are renegade parts of you that want you to waste your powers dealing with them. Your misguided attention to their punishing presence gives them a life they wouldn’t have without tricking you into giving them one. This means you don’t need power to deal with what’s been defeating you, only the higher understanding it takes to consciously dismiss it from your inner life. You have that power now. Start using it.
Work with this exercise. Use its instructions. Get one thing done, one thing at a time, all the way down your list… whatever it may be. Proceed in spite of any thoughts or feelings that would have you believe you can’t. Just behind your certainty that your “list” is too much for you, lies a new and conscious capability to proceed one step at a time, to accomplish one task at a time, to your satisfaction.
(Excerpted from “Design Your Destiny” by Guy Finley)
Guy Finley is the best-selling author of The Secret of Letting Go, The Essential Laws of Fearless Living, and more than 40 books and audio albums on self-realization, including his brand new book The Secret of Your Immortal Self. Guy is the founder and director of Life of Learning Foundation, a nonprofit center for self-study located in southern Oregon where he gives talks four times each week. Guy is a faculty member at the Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, New York and is a regular expert contributor to Beliefnet and the Huffington Post. Click here to visit the Life of Learning Foundation website and sign up for free to receive Guy’s 8-hour eCourse Seven Steps to Oneness on 8 MP3 downloads.