MAY 2, 2021
About two days ago, I came across this tweet by Benjamin Putano:
I was intrigued.
I pondered over this thought.
And, I agreed with it.
I realized that sometimes when I sit down to write my blog posts every week or work on my book, I feel great when I start, but a few minutes and often about 200-300 words in, I feel myself take a pause. Sometimes I stare aimlessly at the blinking cursor on the screen. Sometimes I shift to my browser and search for a statistic I may like to include in the post. Sometimes I just start typing the randomness going through my mind, realizing a few sentences later that my words don’t make sense, and then I delete them. Sometimes while writing, I have had the thought, “Maybe, this isn’t good enough.” But then I remind myself that my job is to write first and edit later. Whatever it is, there is a slight resistance.
Sometimes this pause is a few seconds; sometimes, a few minutes. And sometimes, it is over 10 minutes if I get lost in the Google Search I am doing for a picture or data. I then get back to Microsoft Word, punch a little more at my keyboard, get some more words in, and then go off like a rocket. I lose track of time as I immerse myself in the words appearing on my screen, and that’s when a chapter of my book or a blog post comes to life with intent. This is what happens before I hit the “Publish” button on Sunday morning and share my thoughts with you.
(A little side note: I am not feeling this way today. I am over 200 words in, and I feel energetic and excited to share this post with you. My keyboard is being punched hard as well. 🙂 I hope that you are enjoying the post too!)
I thought over this tweet and the process I went through as well. And that is when I concluded, “This applies to every type of work! Whether it is content creation, shooting a video, writing a college essay, or creating the Quarterly report of a company, this principle applies to everything!”
Whatever we do, we feel overwhelmed in the beginning. We feel as if we have to carve a statue out of a mountain. Even if it is as easy as typing out a set of given words, we feel overwhelmed at the beginning.
And, according to trends.google.com, the term “How to not feel overwhelmed” has been searched more and more in the past year, reaching its lifetime high search volume in January 2021, only a few months ago! This problem needed a proper, thorough answer.
That’s why I wrote this post.
How to Not Feel Overwhelmed?
It is time to get to the solution. Now, we only need to understand how to find our flow and get over this cumbersome burden of doing something. One of the most effective and easiest ways is to just persevere through it and find your way through as you enter the state of flow and get the work done. This can work every time you feel stuck or overwhelmed.
This Friday, on 30th April, I decided to finish all of my school work for the weekend to focus on my creative projects for two days. My school ended around 3 pm, and I started by solving mathematics sums. The tasks I needed to tackle were: a 15-page mathematics assignment, a Physics and an English Worksheet, and about 20 odd questions to be done in the notebook. I looked at that and felt, “How can I finish so much in a few hours?”
But, I just persevered through it, and I finally got it done by eight in the evening. I was free for the whole weekend.
However, the real solution is more profound than just forcing yourself to get it done. The real answer is revealed when you understand why you are doing what you are doing. You need to be clear on your purpose behind taking a specific action and what you wish to achieve through it. You may be feeling stuck or resisted because you do not know why you are doing something or that the activity does not align with your main aim or purpose.
When I worked on all of my weekend homework on Friday evening, I knew my purpose behind it. I wanted to focus on my work outside of school throughout the weekend. That action aligned with my main aim, and I was able to push through it.
In the same manner, before you start doing anything, you need to ask yourself, “Why am I doing this? What will I gain from this activity, and what value will it add?”
Simple. Easy. Quick. Effective.
Around the end of March 2020, over 13 months ago, I decided to write one blog post a week. During the initial weeks, I spent a considerable amount of time trying to decide on a topic, and while sitting to write upon it, I would feel resistance, and I would drift here and there. Some days, I waited and procrastinated until I absolutely had to write, and over the next three to four hours, I would end up writing about 800-1200 words and then publish them. But as I practiced and I wrote more and more, I was taking up less time, writing more efficiently, and fell in love with the process. I also saw a structure appear in my writing. I improved a lot, and the resistance decreased. And today, as I type this post, there is no resistance at all.
Why did this happen? Because I was clear on why I was writing my blog posts. I want to inspire other people to lead great, remarkable, and extraordinary lives. I want to help people follow their purpose and live life to the fullest. I was crystal-clear on my purpose. Clarity is magical, and once you have clarity of purpose, you become extremely powerful and generate outstanding results. Whenever I got stuck or felt unmotivated to start or finish my writing, I reminded myself of this purpose, and that gave me the zeal to push through and achieve a state of flow.
Also, when I started working on my first book in October 2020, I only wrote 700 words on the first day. On the second day, I wrote about 1200, and on the third, I wrote 2000. I wasn’t sure if my writing was coming out how I wanted it to be. I had no experience of writing long-form content that went deep into concepts over thousands of words. But I was clear on my purpose, and on one Saturday, I ended up writing 12000 words. (My Keyboard got punched really hard that day, but it fortunately survived.)
That’s the power of purpose. And that’s the deeper and more effective solution to deal with overwhelming thoughts and feelings. Be clear on your purpose, and whenever you are stuck, remind yourself of why you started in the first place.
Trust me, it can seem difficult at first, but all you need to do is push through the initial resistance. You will never regret it! I can assure you of that because I have seen the magic work for myself. Now it is time that you do!
Partnering in your success, happiness, and growth,