Over the years, I have come to realize that multi-tasking and taking on too many duties is a direct contributor to symptoms like increased heartbeat, fatigue, headaches, difficulty with concentration, nausea and sweating. Many times, I mistakenly attributed these physical symptoms with anxiety when in fact they were symptoms of simply not prioritizing my life. I foolishly thought that because my life was running in all directions and I was feeling frazzled that there must be something wrong with me and most likely it was anxiety.
The Busier We Get, The Quicker We Lose Sight of Our Priorities
In actuality, as I became more and more trapped in the endless cycle of work, errands and other responsibilities, I lost sight of the things that were important to me: maintaining a good emotional state and a good quality of life. I was so consumed with meeting everyone else’s needs and wishes that I did not give myself the time to check-in to make sure I was putting my energy on what was foremost for me. Days, weeks, months and even years would pass by. All without me ensuring that I was focused on what was genuinely important to me. This behaviour led to sleepless nights because I could not shut off my brain. Then during the day I felt debilitated by all that was still ahead of me to do.
Today, how do I stop myself from falling into this trap of feeling those out-of-control feelings?
I surround myself predominately with people that support me, my priorities and my values. I make sure I have relationships that inspire me and energize me rather than only demand energy from me and hold me back.
Also, and very importantly, I frequently evaluate where I spend my time. I do this in order to discover how I can find more time for my priorities. I track where I am spending time in the areas of work, exercise, meals, time with loved ones, time spent on hobbies, sleep, meditation – everything and anything. Then I step back. I look at how I can change the way I am spending my time to focus on my priorities.
Take Stock of Your Relationships
In addition, I take stock of my relationships. Who do I want to make more time for? And who do I need to let go of to be able to thrive? I have also become okay with not everyone supporting my core values and priorities. I have found that when I think about my relationships, some people drain my energy and harm my sense of well-being. And when I realize that my priorities have shifted, I re-evaluate who I spend most of my time with.
By holding myself accountable for my priorities and making small changes to focus on what’s really important, I feel more confident, joyful and less anxious every day. I also remember the old adage, we are only busy with the things that we say yes to.
How can you practice imagination today? What in your life can you build an imaginary story around? What’s stopping you from imagining – nothing!
To our Health and Wellbeing,