On The Days when Opportunities Knock With Overwhelming Force And There Is Just Too Much To Do

Some days the opportunities that other people offer us seem to cascade down on us with amazing force.  These are wonderful days, days when our ship has come in and days of easy abundance.

These are the days when instead of three new clients calling, fifteen call; instead of one job offer you get five; instead of a few friends calling you, twenty call you.  They say, “When it rains, it pours” and on these days it DOWNPOURS.  These are days of AMAZING OPPORTUNITY after AMAZING OPPORTUNITY and there are so many of them, ALL AT ONCE.

We can at once be both VERY APPRECIATIVE of these days AND, at the same time, THOROUGHLY OVERWHELMED!!!   On these days, we often feel like we are spread too thin.   Each opportunity seems to require a certain amount of attention, but we don’t feel able to give any of them the full amount of attention they desire.

Suddenly even though we are surrounded by abundance, we are utterly stressed out, exhausted and miserable.

Suddenly, all these new opportunities don’t feel like an adventure or even a blessing but a very uncomfortable and out of control situation.

So frustrating!  What to do?

OPPORTUNITY OVERWHELM can turn into a huge obstacle because there doesn’t seem to be enough hours in a day for us to accomplish all that we need to accomplish.

The great news is OPPORTUNITY EASE can be CREATED out of OPPORTUNITY OVERWHELM.  I say CREATED because each opportunity comes to us in a certain package.

The opportunities that other people offer us naturally come in an OPPORTUNITY PACKAGE designed by them.  Often included in the opportunity is an idea of how much time we should devote to it and when we should devote this time.  (It’s interesting to note that these specifications are actually part of what makes an opportunity an exciting opportunity, rather than a vague “I want to do something with you someday” opportunity.)  However, these same specifics that make an opportunity an exciting opportunity can also lead to OPPORTUNITY OVERWHELM.

OPPORTUNITY EASE comes when you work with the person who gave you the opportunity to show him or her that you appreciate the opportunity being offered, while at the same time, working with him or her to revise the specifics of the opportunity so that the specifics don’t overwhelm you.

Think of your opportunities as water and your day as a glass.  Say a full glass symbolizes the maximum amount of work you can do in a day while being focused, productive and happy.  Now you want to schedule your opportunities to fill your glass to full but not overflowing.   Over-scheduling will lead to more water than your glass can handle, a mess, waste, and exhaustion.  So the art-form is knowing how full you want your glass on at daily basis and then revising the specifics of the opportunities people offer you together with them, so that your glass is not overflowing or too empty, but filled with just the right amount of abundant opportunities to grace your days.

Game of the Day

How could you create more OPPORTUNITY EASE in your life?

Jason Freeman is a professional writer, and a one-of-a-kind public speaker.  He is the founder and CEO of Heroic Yes! Productions. Jason has an MFA in Poetry from the University of Nebraska.  He knows the pain of perceiving one’s life through a lens of limitation and also the thrill of moving beyond that mindset.  For more information on Jason’s powerful message, or to book him to present to your organization, go to www.HeroicYesProductions.com. 

When Too Many People Offer You Too Many Good Opportunities All At Once: Five Tips For Turning OPPORTUNITY OVERWHELM Into OPPORTUNITY EASE

Realize That The Opportunities You Are Offered Are A Good Sign

Opportunities are exciting and a sign you are on the right track.

But sometimes there’s so much going on we start to feel short of breath and we begin to struggle with our opportunities and push them aside, almost as if our opportunities are our enemies.  At these times, it’s worthwhile to remember that opportunities are what we want.  We want to embrace our opportunities while, at the same time, managing them.

Appreciate All The Opportunities You Are Given (Even If You Decide Not To Take Some Of Them)

Let the people giving you opportunities know how grateful you are.  This is as simple as saying “I really appreciate your offer and I look forward to having a chance to think it over.”

Decide Which Opportunities Are A Good Fit For You

The opportunities that people offer you will likely require your time, energy and money.  Before taking someone up on an opportunity, really think about if you are interested in it; if it is in-line with your goals and dreams; and if you want to devote your time and resources to it.  If the answer is “Yes,” proceed with confidence.  If the answer is “No,” find a way to say a polite and definite “No Thank You.”  This “No Thank You” frees you from your obligation to engage in the opportunity.  And just as importantly, your “No” frees the person who asked you to find someone who is truly interested in his or her opportunity.

Schedule So That Not Everything Needs To Happen All At Once

If you decide to take an opportunity, schedule with the person offering you the opportunity so that the opportunity is manageable For You.  You are doing yourself a great service, as well as the person offering you the opportunity, because if you are overwhelmed it will be much harder for you to give their opportunity your full attention.

Write Opportunities You Decline Down To Give You More Choices Later

If you choose to express appreciation for an opportunity someone has given you while, at the same time, declining it by giving them a polite and definite, “No Thank You,” you might consider making note of the opportunity and then making a notation on your calendar to reconsider it in a month or two.  When you reconsider it, you may just reconfirm that you are glad you said, “No.”  Or you may realize that while you are glad you said “No” the first time, the opportunity now sounds good to you.  In this case, you have the information to contact the person and tell them that you rethought his or her offer.

Game of the Day

The next time you experience OPPORTUNITY OVERWHELM how will you use these tips to turn your overwhelm into OPPORTUNITY EASE?

Brilliant Waiting

This afternoon I drove to get my car washed.  I figured that it would take maybe 10 or 15 minutes tops to do the inside and out.  The attendant who greeted me offered me the Manager’s Special and said it will take AT LEAST HALF AN HOUR to get my car done.  NOW I DID NOT FIND THAT SPECIAL.  I mean I was already OVERWHELMED with everything on my TO-DO LIST, and let me tell you, waiting an extra FIFTEEN minutes WAS NOT ONE OF THE ITEMS ON MY LIST.

(By the way, the words in caps equal drama in my head.)

Do you ever have those days where you are overwhelmed and just feel that you don’t have an extra 15 minutes?

In that moment, I realized I had a BUSY DAY ahead of me and that I already felt WAY BEHIND and now to get my car the way I wanted it, I had to wait 30 MINUTES or more with NOTHING TO DO.  Let me define nothing to do: I didn’t have my calendar. I didn’t have my notebook.  I didn’t even have text messages to catch up on and it was in the middle of a workday so not even a good time to call people. I mean I had NOTHING TO DO!

 Have you ever been in this situation?  How did you handle it?

Well, THIS WAS A PREDICAMENT.  My first thought was, “How can I get out of this one?  Should I drive home quickly and get something to work on?”  No, that would take even more time.  Then I thought, “Oh, good, they have a gift shop, I can just buy a notebook and write.   SO I CAN AT LEAST BE DOING SOMETHING.”  But guess what?  Their gift shop was a NOTEBOOK-LESS GIFT SHOP.  And to make matters worse, there weren’t any other promising NOTEBOOK ABUNDANT stores close by.

How would you spend a half hour or more at the car wash with nothing to do?

I considered more options.  In the waiting area, there were free magazines to read or there were greeting cards I could peruse in the gift shop.  But neither option seemed to be PRODUCTIVE.

So, with nothing else to do, I took a seat on a bench out by where the cars come out when they are done and JUST SAT AND WAITED.  For the first five or ten minutes, simply waiting was kind of hard.

Then I began to really notice where I was.  Now I thought I already knew where I was.  I was at a car wash on Pacific Highway JUST WAITING.

But in another way, I realized that I had no idea where I was.  It had been a frustrating blur in my busy day.

Gradually I began to notice the blue sky and the fact that the Big Bay of San Diego was shimmering a block away.  There was a cruise ship dock down there.  Palm trees swayed in the wind close by.

And suddenly I noticed how glad I was to have the luxury of sitting and waiting with nothing to do.  I was literally in paradise. But until I sat down with nothing to do, I hadn’t noticed.

The place I was became beautiful because I sat and noticed it.  Was it beautiful before I sat and noticed it?  Sure it was, but I wasn’t aware of it.

My car wash experience has got me thinking.  Maybe success in life is as much about pausing to notice the wonder of where we are at right now, as it is taking the actions to be successful.

Maybe part of getting ahead is simply noticing how far ahead we are and pausing to appreciate it.

Game of the Day

How will you really notice where you are today?

How will you appreciate where you are today?

Jason Freeman is a professional writer, and a one-of-a-kind public speaker.  He is the founder and CEO of Heroic Yes! Productions. Jason has an MFA in Poetry from the University of Nebraska.  He knows the pain of perceiving one’s life through a lens of limitation and also the thrill of moving beyond that mindset.  For more information on Jason’s powerful message, or to book him to present to your organization, go to www.HeroicYesProductions.com.