To all of the over-planners, over-thinkers, and over-stressors, this one is for you,
Once again, here I am personally defining the phrase "pot calling the kettle black." As the person constantly making lists, using whiteboards and planning my day out minute by minute, I have been the butt of many rather brutal jokes.
Unfortunately, those jokes are rooted in a large amount of truth. There is nothing wrong with being a type A personality. The world needs a balance of docile and slightly obsessive human beings. In the accurate words of Rascal Flatts "sometimes it feels like the world is spinning faster and faster" and for those type A people much like myself, we meet that speed with our own insane agendas.
So, as another new school year starts, a fresh season looms on the horizon and work schedules begin to expand once again, take notice of your over-the-top characteristics. Allow yourself to recognize where and when you feel the most stress and how you are best prepared to calm your own mind. As you begin to self-evaluate, here are a few things to remember as you make it a point to prioritize your own mental health.
First, remember that everyone has their thing. Find it and do it. For me, I make lists. Whether those lists are on my phone, in a planner, or in size 120 font on a whiteboard, lists keep me calm and they keep me productive. Evaluate what calms your crazy and embrace that to the best of your ability. In my first year of college, I began to schedule the time to relax. At first, it seemed silly to write in "nap time" on a college planner but allotting that time to myself made me way less anxious about taking a break in the middle of the day.
Second, get real about an overloaded schedule and cut the things that can be cut. Those with a type A personality are more likely to sign up for more than their schedules can possibly handle. You need to open yourself to the idea of saying no and prioritizing what will benefit you the most in the long run. Are your extracurriculars benefiting your health? Do they make you happy? Are you advancing your career goals? Do you need to do all of these things in one semester?
These are all really tough questions for people like us. When you find yourself faced with the challenge of paring down your schedule, try sitting down with another person. Pick a friend, bring your FULL and HONEST schedule, and allow them to talk through your commitments with you. More often than not, an impartial fresh set of eyes will help you realize what things are draining your energy with little to no return.
Third, make a list (here I go again) of at least 10 things you can do to calm your mind and make you happy. Hang that list somewhere you see every single day. This may seem a little unnecessary but in reality, seeing calming activities in front of you constantly is the best way to remind yourself to take a break. As you zone out in your bedroom, let your eyes catch the list of ten things that calm your brain and anxiety, from there you will be more likely to incorporate those things into your schedule.
Busy-body, teacher's pet, OCD, insane - I've heard every name known to man and odds are you have, too. While there is no problem with being a busy and productive person, balance is needed in everyone's life. Without balance, we are destined for permanent damage.
As you find yourself over-stressing and putting more on your plate than you could ever manage to handle, remember to prioritize you.
The Ultimate Busy-Body Herself