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What To Do When A Project Overwhelms You

The secret of getting ahead is getting started

The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one

~ Mark Twain

Are you feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or depressed? Do you have a large project ahead of you and cannot get started because you are either overwhelmed with emotions or the size of the project?

Here are 2 challenges for you and a list of ways you can balance yourself while progressing forward in a project.

Challenge One: this weekend, identify a project that needs to be done and make a list of the tasks that need to be completed. Start with simple tasks such as getting the cleaning supplies out and place on the counter and progress your list to name all the tasks it will take to complete the project.

Look at the list and identify two goals that you want to work on this upcoming week. One small goal that can easily or quickly be accomplished and one larger goal that will take you time or effort.

When you complete your tasks be sure to mark those tasks off of the list. Our brains love seeing progress no matter how big or small the progress is. Your brain does not stop to see what is under the line but that that task is done and that moves you forward.

Challenge Two: Find one thing you can do on Friday, one on Saturday, and one on Sunday that is meant to balance and reward yourself.

Here are some ideas for you to try

1) Turn off the news sources

2) Stop using social media

3) Drink your favorite hot tea or flavored coffee

4) Talk a walk

5) Check out yoga

6) Read the Bible

7) Find a great meditation app or Youtube channel

8) Breathing techniques

9) Pray

10) Self-massage

11) Body stretching. Also available on Youtube

12) Go on a short drive

13) Start a daily affirmation book/journal

14) Go on a long drive

15) Hug someone in your house

16) Kiss your spouse

17) Brush your hair

18) Listen to your favorite pastor

19) Take a hot bubble bath

20) Do one act of kindness for a loved one

21) Do one act of kindness for a stranger

22) Take a 5-minute nap

23) Journal your fears

24) Journal your joys

25) Sleep in

26) Make a list of things you want to see or places you want to go

27) Listen to your favorite song

28) Listen to your favorite genre of music

29) Fix a healthy snack

30) Do a facial

31) Do your nails

32) Use your favorite scented lotion

33) Fix a healthy snack

34) Find a new craft project to start

35) Exercise

36) Color in an adult coloring book

37) Sit outside on patio, deck, porch

38) Play a game with your family

39) Start a puzzle

40) Watch an old movie

41) Listen to your favorite comedian

42) Have someone give you a scalp massage

43) Start a new book

44) Play Clue online with your friends

45) Call someone you have not talked to in a while

46) Take a long shower

47) Snuggle with your spouse or child

48) Find a great escape room game online

49) Bake

50) Plant something

51) Add flowers to the grocery list

52) Go on a hike

53) Learn a new language

54) Play a musical instrument

55) Learn something you always wanted to learn

56) Sing

57) Lift weights

58) Play with Alexa and have her tell you fun facts or jokes

59) Write your bucket list

60) Explore different countries on the computer

61) Take a virtual tour of a museum

62) Put together a girls/guys group

63) Paint a picture

64) Play with your pet

65) Take a fun class

66) Make jewelry

67) Safely sit by a bonfire

68) Camp out in the back yard

69) Learn Tia Chi on Youtube

70) Dance to your favorite music

71) Take pictures of the outdoors

72) Take candid pictures of your family as they go about their day

73) Start your own blog

74) Read your favorite blog

75) Read a magazine

76) Find a positive Youtube channel that lifts your spirits

77) Attend a different church's virtual sermon

78) Send a kind note to someone

79) Send a kind note to yourself

80) Post up affirmations around the house

81) Build something

82) Make a list of all your blessings

83) Designate one day of the weekend as your Holiday

84) Play on the Wii to get moving

85) Write some poetry

86) Ask your partner to learn to ballroom dancing with you in the living room

87) Have breakfast in bed

88) Check out a video support group

89) Sit and watch the rain

90) Watch the sunset

91) Watch the sunrise

92) Dream about where you see yourself in the future

93) Start writing a book

94) Reorganize your schedule to slow down your life

95) Start planning a party

96) Light your favorite candle

97) Forgive someone

98) Find ways to show appreciation to those that serve your household such as the garbage employees

99) Post only inspirational posts on social media

100) Explore a different genre of music

102) Sit in the sunshine

102) Adopt a pet

103) Play a board game with your family

104) Draw pictures

105) Write down 25 things that make you great!

106) Take a bike ride

107) Roller skate

108) Make a list of future goals to work on

109) Eat some chocolate

110) Start or participate in counseling

These are just some of the ways you can balance yourself. Do you have other ways you enjoy balancing yourself?

If you have been depressed, anxious or dealing with feelings that are overwhelming for 2 weeks or more, please see a professional to see if counseling may help you deal with these feelings.

Have a blessed and balanced day!


Melissa Smith is an LMFT in the state of Kentucky. To find out more about her click here.

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Live. Life. Balanced is a blog written by a licensed marriage and family therapists.

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