How many of you have sat, paralyzed, ruminating about your to-do list? Have you found yourself being so overwhelmed that you cannot possibly even think though what the first step could be?
I call this “Analysis-paralysis”
When your productivity is stalled, your self-esteem typically tanks. When your self-esteem tanks, your productively will plummet. When your productivity plummets, you are likely to experience depression and/or anxiety. I think we can see the problem here.
My goal at Your Mental Restoration is to help the average person optimize their mental health by targeting the underlying hang-ups we all have in an effort to optimize mental health. DBT teaches a skill called IMPROVE which is an acronym to help you cope with distress. IMPROVE stands for:
One in the moment
I want you to focus on the self-encouragement portion of this skill, which I can assure you is crucial for your mental health. The way you speak to yourself will either improve your emotional wellbeing or cause you to spiral downward. Self-encouragement means that you speak to yourself as you would speak to a friend, to a child, to a loved one. If you make a mistake (as you will), you say to yourself “that’s ok, I have learned from this and now I know how to do it different next time” or “just because I made a mistake, does not make me a mistake” or “mistakes happen and are a part of growth. I am so proud of my effort and courage to try”.
Self-encouragement means that you STOP judging yourself and start forgiving yourself.
How does this relate to productivity? See paragraph one. When you find yourself overwhelmed by your to-do list, encouraging and being kind to yourself can free you the cycle of rumination. What I suggest is that you start each day with some positive affirmations. Before you get out of bed, tell yourself that you believe in yourself, that you believe you are worthy, and that you have faith in yourself. Make a Pinterest board of encouraging quotes that can be your reminders. Write these quotes on your bathroom mirrors. Purchase some items that have encouraging statements on them. Surround yourself with uplifting messages!