I guess we all know the feeling of having stress, seeing that huge amount of work in front of you and panicking and thinking you won’t be able to do all of that. I have been there too a lot of times, and since it’s not a nice feeling I’m asking myself how did I even let this come so far or could I have avoided it somehow?
When I think back to the times where I was stressed a lot, I remember that I always had a long TODO-list in my mind. And on that list was always a whole bunch of tasks that just seemed so many and when I finally got myself to do them, they suddenly went off the list very quickly so I was left with just a few tasks that took some longer time. The thing is that even those leftover tasks needed much more time than the others, it didn’t look that much. This made me feel better and more relaxed about everything. You can trick your mind here in the same way it gets tricked lifting things, picking up little things always feels heavier than picking up the same weight but in a lot bigger version. So a small TODO-list looks less than a big one with the same amount of time you have to put into it. Also I felt much more comfortable and could focus on the few tasks much better and thus working on them more concentrated. That was always the way out for me of stressed feelings.
So this means actually that my way into the stress was usually being too lazy to do the small quick tasks, like doing the laundry or so. But this is pretty stupid right? This means that I could actually save myself from all the stress if I just do every short task, like 10-minutes-tasks, right after it comes up and this way my TODO-list will always stay clean and short.
Realizing this I’m trying now to make myself to do everything directly that doesn’t take long – sometimes you even save time with that since for example you can wash the dishes more easily when they are not dried yet – and this way trying to keep my TODO-list short. This has the nice side effect that my weekly scheduling also gets easier, since there are not that much things anymore that I have to fit into my schedule. It could happen that a spontaneous task will interfere with my planned schedule, but since it just takes not longer than 10 or 15 minutes, the delay should still stay in bounds.