Most of us hustle. From the moment we sleepily awaken and grab our phones to check emails and social media, to the last checks of the same before we go back to sleep after a busy day. From one end of each day to the other—we are on. It sure is easy to feel overwhelmed, but what if there were a way to save yourself from overcommitment?
During crunch times, I literally hear my brain make a buzzing sound. This is clear indication to me that my brain is buckling under the pressure of all the information I am trying to cram into it. The result is often a debilitating, massive migraine that forces me to slow down.
Because once I take one of those migraine meds my brain seems to get rewired and it is impossible to think quickly. Everything starts to…slow…d-o-w-n.
And once I feel better, I go right back to the same morning-to-night cycle.
My friend Ruta Fox—a brilliant writer, close longtime friend, and cliché slayer (she oversees my business copy to ensure it is concise and straightforward)—recently told me that I wasn’t fully considering how long the actions I was planning actually take to complete.
As the System Creator-In-Chief, I didn’t like hearing this because for a long time now I have been using my calendar to manage my time. I schedule every task I need to do. When working on a project, I use my calendar to schedule the time needed to complete each task as well.
Thanks to Ruta, I suddenly realized a fatal flaw in the way I have been allocating my time. I was not accounting for one factor, which happens to be the most important task of all…
There is the execution time you need to complete a task or project, which is easy enough to schedule. But what about the time it takes to come up with the ideas and the content?
You’ve heard of people whose amazing breakthrough ideas came to them in the shower. My last and best shower idea was six months ago when it finally dawned on me that The Women’s Code and Balanced Leadership were really parts of Growth Architecture, which is my system to grow, build, and scale businesses. Let’s face it—you need balanced leadership to run a business successfully. And The Growth Architect idea came about during a girls weekend where we did nothing but spa, talk, and enjoy lots of wine.
Creativity can only take place when we give ourselves space to think.
This past week I kept waking up with a pit in my stomach. I had scheduled a large event and was about to sign a big contract with a hotel that would cost me thousands of dollars. And suddenly it dawned on me. I was overcommitting again.
Right now, I am not effective enough to pull it off. I have been dealing with personal circumstances and the emotional aftermath of the death of a young man who played a big role in my daughter’s life (and subsequently my own). I was grieving, I was behind my timeline, and I couldn’t think straight.
I had two choices: honor myself or push through.
This time I decided I HAD to honor myself. I made the decision after I asked myself this one question: What would take the pressure off? I suggest you ask this question to yourself when you get into a situation of overcommitment.
Once you ask the right question it’s easy to get the best answer. I decided to downsize the event and do it much smaller just to give myself breathing room. I instantly felt better.
Back to the calendar. Let’s remember to add some time in there to just be, or think, or sit on the pier with our feet dangling in the water. Honor yourself by creating the mental space for your next big idea to hatch. The emails can wait.
Beate Chelette is The Growth Architect and a results-oriented businesswoman with an entrepreneurial spirit and a proven track record in growing, building and scaling women’s businesses. Once $135,000 in debt and a single mother, she successfully sold her business to a global entertainment media company owned by Bill Gates in a multi-million dollar deal.
Through her online courses, one-on-one training programs and live speaking events, she mentors women entrepreneurs with her 5 Star Success Blueprint, developed with the knowledge gleaned from her growing, scaling and selling her own company. Beate has a deep commitment to supporting women.
She is the creator of The Women’s Code, the fourth step of Growth Architecture that is focused on Supporting Balanced Leadership. Her proprietary methods specifically address women’s obstacles and she leads from experience, having survived in business in a highly competitive male-dominated environment.
She is a respected speaker and mentor and is the author of the book “Happy Woman Happy World How to Go From Overwhelmed to Awesome”, a book that corporate trainer and best-selling author Brian Tracy calls “a handbook for every woman who wants health, success and a fulfilling career.”