Isn’t it ironic? You start your business so that you can control your schedule and your life and in the end, it ends up controlling you.
Is it any wonder so many entrepreneurs struggle with balancing their desire to grow their business successfully and have a life.
Author Scott Eblin (@scotteblin) has been there and done that. And his book “Overworked and Overwhelmed: The Mindfulness Alternative” is a treatise to not only his personal victory over overwhelm, but the journeys of dozens of professionals who are at the top of their field.
I received a review copy of this book a few weeks ago, but it wasn’t until after all the holiday hoopla that I’ve had the time to dig in. And I’m glad I did, because it was the perfect message at the perfect time.
How to Get the Most Out of Overworked and Overwhelmed
One of Eblin’s philosophies is that there is no such thing as “balance” only a life rhythm that successful professionals can harness and use to their advantage. The way to get into this rhythm is by practicing mindfulness. And this is the purpose of this book.
“Overworked and Overwhelmed” is divided into four parts.
Part One provides the reader with an introduction and orientation to the rest of the book. You’ll come to understand where overwhelm comes from, what the true meaning of mindfulness is and how to operate the mind-body system for peak performance.
Part Two introduces readers to Eblin’s Life GPS personal planning model which is the organizing framework for the rest of the book. In fact, the last chapter of this section, “What’s Their Secret”, is my favorite chapter in “Overworked and Overwhelmed” because it really made me stop and reflect on my business and my life.
Here are a few of my favorite tips from this section:
- Tip 2: Is this really necessary? This tip asks you to do a sort of day-in-the-life inventory and rigorously ask yourself if you really need to be involved in this meeting, call or activity.
- Tip 4: Understand and set your operating rhythm. To do this, you need to be an observer of when it’s the best time to do your best work. Eblin provides several examples of professionals with different rhythms to their day and how they optimize their activities, You’re sure to find someone who has a similar rhythm to your own.
- Tip 6: Give yourself time for unconscious thought. As a business owner, your employees and customers count on you to be the creative thinker and have the big ideas. You can’t do that if you’re wrapped up in stressful details.
Part Three is the meat of the book and digs deep into creating routines in four domains: physical, mental, relational, and spiritual. Each chapter contains strategies, tips and routines that you can read, think about and follow to increase your level of mindfulness and get you into this high-performance life rhythm.
Scott Eblin’s Private Story and How It Influenced This Book
Scott Eblin has more than 15 years of managerial and executive experience in the public sector. He’s also worked in financial services and as a vice president in a Fortune 250 energy company.
For the past 14 years, he’s been a leadership coach, speaker, educator and author working with C-suite senior executives and high potential leaders in some of the world’s best-known companies and organizations.
His private story starts in 2009, when at the age of 48, he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The disease put a major crimp in his self identity as a “runner.” It was the practice of mindfulness that saved his life and he’s written “Overworked and Overwhelmed” with the intent of having the practices he shares save yours as well.
“Overworked and Overwhelmed” is a new kind of time management book.
If you’ve read David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” or if you’re a fan of Stephen Covey’s “7 Habits” books, you will love “Overworked and Overwhelmed.” It serves as the perfect complement to your current time management routine. In fact, I think you’ll find that it will give you the feeling of more control, more freedom and more optimism about your business and your life.