3 Cures When You’re High Octane and Overcommitted

September 27, 2017

You commit, don’t you?

You’re an overachiever.  That’s what overachievers do.  They commit.

Then you commit again.  And again.  And…

…you finally break, stress out, freak out or come to your boiling point.

Can we just call it as it is?

You Are An Overcommitter.

And you do it for many reasons and many things.

You commit to your business, the kids’ school events, checking in on your parents, the monthly book club, your golf league, volunteering at a community or church event, serving on a board, making dinner for an elderly couple, speaking at an event…what have I missed?

You have a chronic “disease.”  Let’s call it “Poor Limit Setting-itis.”

Sure, many of these acts are selfless. Some of them are “have-to’s.”  But what’s really going on is you aren’t setting priorities or boundaries.  Being overcommitted isn’t a badge of honor (though I know many believe that).

Overcommitted can be cured, plus you’ll feel better and actually get more done.

Here are three things you can do right now if any of what you’ve read has your name written all over it (be honest…I’m talking to you right now, right?).

  1. Figure out your Top 4 Priorities: what are the 4 critical places you must spend your time?  Only 4.  It’s easy to believe you have way more than 4.  But you don’t.  Beyond 4, the request is probably important or even nice to do.  But it’s not critical.
  2. Practice this: “No.” Say no.  The next person who asks you to do something that doesn’t land within your Top 4 Priorities (that means 4…not 4 ½ or 12), beg off.  Be polite about it.  I know you will.
  3. Polish Your Negotiating Skills: the next person to ask you to do something outside your Top 4 Priorities (you’ve created them now, right?), negotiate.  Can you do it later?  Could you oversee the request rather than do it yourself?  Can you introduce them to someone who does it better than you?

Go forth and do great things,

Martha Hanlon and Chris Williams