When is enough, enough? Something that has been on my mind a lot is the autopilot mode. When do we switch to this mode? Do we ever switch off? Is the autopilot mode the same as our holiday feeling that we can't get out of our system when we need to focus on work again?
So many questions.
You are probably reading this to find an answer and, to be honest with you, I am writing this to find an answer. Maybe that will be one of my tips to you, write. Although I am only on the first paragraph so have no credibility as to whether it works yet.
THE MOMENT AUTOPILOT MODE IS SWITCHED ON
The day, week or month when you realise you are doing everything at the same time and don't stop for even a second to think about what it is that you are trying to accomplish, where it is that you are going or what it is that drives you is the moment you have switched on your autopilot mode.
For me, those moments appear more than they should - because I haven't quite figured out how to turn off this mode completely.
If you are like me, you probably take on more projects and tasks than you have time for and you will convince yourself that you are a supernatural human being that can fit 36 hours in a 24 hour day. Though, doing this means having zero time to plan, to rest and to put your thoughts in order which can have a serious negative impact on your mental health in the long run.
Something I said to one of my friends the other day was; ''I wish someone could make an excel spreadsheet for my thoughts'' because they are all over the place. I strongly believe that organisation is important for your overall well being, if there is chaos in your daily routine then there is chaos in your mind, there is no way around it.
Why we need to switch this mode off, asap
I say ''we'', because I need to learn this myself too and I know a lot of you feel the same way. Although we all love the hustle and the excitement of new projects, to-do lists and goal setting (something that won't sound appealing to everyone but to us, it's like a caramel fudge brownie), we need to live in the moment more. No, I don't mean a self care bubble bath every night unlike social media states (tho I'd love one right now), I mean taking one step back to look at the bigger picture. Take a look around you and analyse what needs to be done now and what can wait a day, or two.
I know you don't want to procrastinate and you want everything to be done asap to reach your goals sooner but isn't it better to do everything with complete focus and without extreme impact of your own well-being? I say this as I am currently ill in bed from pushing myself in all different directions for the past two weeks. STILL not satisfied with the work I have done. Enough is enough. You can only do one thing at a time.
Setting all these deadlines for yourself won't make whatever it is you're doing more fun, especially when you can't meet all of them. You have to make a choice. I had an important university deadline the other week, I also wanted to record something for social media that I felt had to be done there and then. It didn't, it could wait a day, or two like I said. However, this uni deadline would still be there and could not be moved or negotiated in any way - this had to be my priority now, I had to make it my priority.
So have a look at your never-ending to do list, take a step back and ask yourself, ''What needs to be done today and what can wait''. Not even taking the time to think about this will negatively impact you later on and most likely cost you more time, so take care of yourself now. A good talk in the mirror and a new empty planner to rewrite is a great way to start.
A to-do list from me to you
- Create a new planning system - no matter how much you like the old one. A new fresh look on things is important and bear in mind that the old system made you switch on autopilot mode.
- Breathe. Take a moment to organise your thoughts and feel everything that you have been holding back. Cry it out if you need to, laugh, dance it out and start living in the moment more.
- Cross things off your list that are only on there to please others.
- Be more effective with your time, start doing power hours, then take a break.
- Don't completely stop everything you are doing, ''holiday mode'' is also not always the best one to be in and hard to recover from, it doesn't have to be all or nothing, just one day at a time.
- Switch up your morning and night time routines.
- Write down all your thoughts after reading this post. Don't hesitate, let it all out.
- Breathe, again.
switching off autopilot mode does not equal procrastination
Let's get something clear here; switching off autopilot mode does not mean that you are procrastinating. It simply means being more present with what you are doing, enjoying the journey and having a clearer focus on the road you are going on. Sometimes you need to take a step back in order to take a step forward. This does not mean you are failing.
Instead of being worried about having no time, be more focused on the time well spent. Find joy in the chaos and in the mess of hustling twenty thousand things at once but don't let it overtake your life. You need a healthy mindset for the journey you are on so take good care of it.
You got this,