Doing Less

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Today, my mantra is “Do less, so you can do more.”  


The other day, a blog friend asked me, “So, is everything in your life as perfect as it appears on the blog?”  I practically spit out of my tea.  I guess I’ve been avoiding it because I don’t want to talk about being stressed out, but I’ve been so stressed out.   I’m currently on deadline to finish my third book, and this has happened with each book… as the end approaches, I get more and more freaked out.  There’s a lot to do!  And it’s hard to balance the book with other tasks. 


I feel like I have so many things on my plate that I’m half-assing a few important items.  So today, I’m focusing on… focusing.  If the bed isn’t made, so be it.  If there are dishes in the sink, so be it.  If e-mails are not answered instantaneously, so be it.  Do more by doing less. 


Anyway, I woke up feeling stressed, but took a few minutes to just sit quietly and chill out.  Sometimes you need that ‘moment,’ you know?  And then my mood was drastically improved by a silly photoshoot this morning.  The Charlotte Observer is doing a piece on Operation Beautiful and the Operation Beautiful book.  It will come out a week from Thursday!


We’ve already done the interview, so all I had to do was stand behind a Plexiglas display of Operation Beautiful notes and smile.  It was fun and really uplifting.  Smiling is a good stress-reliever!   


I love the cheese!


And then it was time for lunch:


This was a good mix!


Millet, prepared per this method

Boiled corn (chilled)

Raw broccoli

Pumpkin seeds


Mmmm Sauce 


Off to focus and work.  I’m leaving behind some small tasks that don’t need my attention right now – it feels freeing!


Does anyone else ever get bogged down by the day to day stuff and lose sight of the bigger project?   I’m so Type A that this is frequently a big problem for me – any advice?  I’m trying to ‘schedule’ my day so I work in specific time blocks, and it seems to be helping!



  • August 16, 2011, 1:21 pm

    Yes!!! I always get bogged down by things like cleaning counters or washing dishes and by the time the day is over, the “big” thing I wanted to do for the day gets pushed aside. This post really hits home for me– I am a teacher and am currently getting ready for a new class I have to teach. I have been avoiding going over some things for school (which are stressing me out) by volunteering to do a million other things for my husband and family. I need to just block off an hour or two for the next few days and get it done! Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Laura @ Cookies vs. Carrots August 16, 2011, 1:21 pm

    Great post! Sometimes you have to prioritize and focus on the the one or two things that are most important!

  • Kelly August 16, 2011, 1:23 pm

    One of my “resolutions” this year was to work on “being present”. I have so much rollin’ around in this silly head of mine, and I THINK I am multitasking, but alas, nothing gets done or it takes me forever. If I work on one task, finish it and then move onto the others, then I feel better, I feel more productive, I feel more calm. Being present also allows me to have better conversations with people because I am there is the moment, focusing on them and what they are saying. It gets worse with age – lack of focus – I’m 32 – so I really have to WORK on it.

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:45 am

      this is a really great tip!

  • Heather @ Side of Sneakers August 16, 2011, 1:23 pm

    My day always gets away from me- I start doing something and it leads to something else, then something else (especially if it’s online) and before I know it, the day is over and I don’t have anything done. So, you’re not alone. 😉

  • Abby @ Abz 'n' Oats August 16, 2011, 1:24 pm

    I find that it is very helpful to schedule myself with certain tasks for certain times of the day. I am very Type A as well. The summer has been a great break so I might be looking back to this post once school starts next week for some pointers once I remember what it is like to be swamped again! lol.

  • Kelly August 16, 2011, 1:25 pm

    First of all, I disagree that everything seems “perfect” on your blog. I don’t think you are a big complainer, and I think you have a positive attitude about life in general, but I also think you are open about any and all problems you are having.

    Second of all, I’m a teacher so during the school year I think I am pretty productive just because my day is so scheduled. In the summer I work a lot too but I work for myself tutoring so my day is much less scheduled and I find it SO much harder to be productive!!! If you do figure out a way I’d love to hear it 🙂

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:45 am

      🙂 Thank you

  • Katie of Cabbage Ranch August 16, 2011, 1:26 pm

    I can relate… My enemies are procrastination and sidetracking. I help myself most by making a To Do list. If something doesn’t make the task list, that means it’s not a priority, and it’s easier to discipline myself to keep from getting sidetracked. As things change, the task list might get edited, but to make the list it has to be legit. 🙂

  • Steph @ Running in the Kitchen August 16, 2011, 1:26 pm

    Yes, yes and yes! The more stressed out I get the more I freak about all of the little things and try to conquer them- dust bunnies in corners, a few unwashed dishes, etc. The more out of control I feel the more in control I try to get. NOT productive at all. What I should be doing is taking a deep breath, focusing on what is in my control and letting the little things go for a bit.

  • Claire @ Live and Love to Eat August 16, 2011, 1:27 pm

    Awesome looking lunch! I get so stressed out by those little things – but right now all I can focus on is work and wedding tasks.

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat August 16, 2011, 1:28 pm

    Oh yes, definitely!! I am very type A as well, and I often get caught up in details because I want things to be just right. Like Kelly (above) one of my focuses lately has been to do just that = focus! On being in the present and not constantly multitasking. One morning recently, I made an effort to come into work and just do 1 task at a time until it was finished. 1 browser window with 1 browser tab – that was it (and it was sort of scary at first!) But I was amazed by how much I managed to get done. I’m definitely coming back to this post to read some comments from other bloggers!

  • Lauren @ Sassy Molassy August 16, 2011, 1:32 pm

    I’m totally like that. I end up being late to work in the am because I just can’t handle leaving dishes undone or laundry sitting in the wash when it needs to be moved to the dryer. I tell ya, I could be a stay at home mom in a second (once i have kids). There are always WAY too many things to do and not enough time to do them all.

  • jen August 16, 2011, 1:34 pm

    i can’t wait to read all the comments in this section. I know the exact feeling of frantically going from one task to the next, barely breathing, barely paying attention to anything… and then the day is gone. i read an old post of yours about doing everything with PURPOSE. it is so true. there is SUCH a difference in quality of life when you do every single little thing of your day with purpose, paying attention, being present. the exact same task (like writing an email or cleaning the bedroom is SO much more pleasurable when you stop for literally one second before and think to yourself, “ok, now i am going to clean the bedroom”. does this make sense to anyone?! lol. thank you caitlin as always 🙂

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:46 am

      you’re right – i think it really does boil down to doing things with a purpose. thank you for this reminder!

  • Lisa @ Sunny Seed Stories August 16, 2011, 1:34 pm

    All. The. Time. My answer for this is trees. If I just get outside and find some trees, I am sure to also discover the perspective I’ve been lacking.

  • Zo August 16, 2011, 1:37 pm

    All the time. I often find myself in an “I’m now overwhelmed, so it’s procrastination time!” followed by trying to examine why I ended up not trying to get things done (and of course it was because I was overwhelmed) cycle. I really need to figure it out. It surprises me that I do this because I feel so much better about things when I feel I’m actually accomplishing something.

  • Amanda August 16, 2011, 1:39 pm

    As a fellow Type A person, I definitely get caught up in everything I “have” to do (i.e., chores, errands, etc.) when really, life would go on if the bathroom wasn’t clean. Sometimes it’s important to put emphasis on what really needs to get done and push everything else to the wayside.

  • Leanne (Bride to Mrs,) August 16, 2011, 1:39 pm

    Zen habbits blog had a great post about this the other day. He talked about being present in each moment.

    I think it’s important to let things slide sometimes so that you can get other things accomplished. Something has to give when you have deadlines/a lot on your plate.

    Very cute picture of you with the operation beautiful post it notes! 🙂

  • Kim@ Wonderings of a Twenty Something August 16, 2011, 1:44 pm

    I definitely get caught up in the small things and forget to focus on the big picture. As it isn’t often that I get two days off in a row, there are generally some big picture items that I have to take care of when I do get the time. I find that if I share my goals with the Husband, he makes a list of big ticket items that we both need to accomplish and lets me know that I can stay in bed on my day off, but we need to accomplish X, Y, and Z before dinner. This has definitely kept us both in better moods and on task!

  • Robin @ The Balanced Life August 16, 2011, 1:48 pm

    I’ve recently begun “chunking” my time and it is really helping! I set aside chunks of time to work on certain tasks: scheduling clients, responding to emails, writing multiple blog posts, writing workouts. It’s helps – primarily because I’m able to turn OFF at times. It helps me to know when I’m officially “on” and when I’m officially “off”. If I don’t do this, I’ll just work around the clock!

    I hope you’re able to breath and stay focused. Keep up the good work!

  • Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife August 16, 2011, 1:51 pm

    I think it is simply HUMAN to get ‘bogged down by the daily tasks’ and forget the bigger picture. Too often WE stress OURselves out. It is a sad, sad thing.

    We should be happy and cheerful, because life is GOOD 🙂 And things ALWAYS work out AND get done!

  • Megan @ On the Road Again August 16, 2011, 1:53 pm

    As a teacher, I know that feeling of being bogged down. The work never ends when the bell rings.

    One of the ways I get through the days is to think about what I DID get accomplished that day. I remember my first year: I’d walk to my car and celebrate at least one thing that went right. Even if it was as small as taking attendance on time or handing back one (of many) stack of graded papers, I’d count it as a Win.

    Focusing on what does get done helps me to destress over all of the things I haven’t gotten to yet.

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:48 am

      Oh, this is good advice. Maybe I need to do a “Done” list as well as a “To DO” list!!

  • Sarah @ w30 August 16, 2011, 1:53 pm

    Yes! Thank you! A friend and I were talking recently about how CRAZY our jobs have gotten as our programs have grown (both work in nonprofits). She said she feels like she is just constantly apologizing to people – emails to answer, phone calls to return, committee meetings to attend,reports to write, programs and budgets to maintain, and people to serve … and, oh yeah, our lives and family and such. It can feel like you are constantly spinning your wheels and never quite catch up. We put such pressure on ourselves, don’t we?! I find myself over-committing, and I know I’m not alone in that. And then, like you said, it feels like you end up not doing anything well. Anyway, it’s nice to hear someone else talk about the same struggle. And I like the approach of just focusing on one task at a time. Sometimes, we just gotta let go of the little things!

    PS It sounds silly, but something I have found that helps is sniffing peppermint oil. It’s amazing for both stress relief and concentration. I keep a jar on my desk at work and one at home. 🙂

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:49 am

      Oooo I think I have some peppermint oil somewhere….

  • Laine August 16, 2011, 1:58 pm

    I never think of you as one of those “la di da my life is perfect” bloggers. You come across as very real with the ups and downs of everyone else.

    I write 4 goals for the week on a giant post it that I hang in my office: 1. “in the office by 8:30”, 2: A revenue goal, 3: a project goal. 4. a bonus goal.

    Then I time time block my days and weeks with slots for all the cases (I’m a lawyer) that will help me reach those goals.

    The big picture is: “Run a sustainable, profitable law practice that makes its employees and clients happy.” Every task has to move me towards that big picture goal.

  • Aine @ Something to Chew Over August 16, 2011, 2:08 pm

    Yes this is a huge problem for me. I particularly agree about the dishes in the sink and the bed being made!

    I also have to work on not getting distracted by emails – the world will not fall apart if I don’t immediately read and reply to every email!

  • Katie @ cooklaughmove August 16, 2011, 2:09 pm

    A good mantra that I really like is “Say no to the bigger yes” applies to finances (say no to a latte to get a cruise) and everyday tasks too (say no to a movie and get my work accomplished = less stress,more happy)

  • Brittany (A Healthy Slice of Life) August 16, 2011, 2:10 pm

    Cute pic with the OB notes!

    And yes, sometimes I feel like I stay busy all day, then 6:00 rolls around and I wonder what I actually got accomplished… it makes no sense. I need to learn to step away from twitter and emails, but it’s so darn hard!

  • Trainer Kjirsten @ Balanced Healthy Life August 16, 2011, 2:16 pm

    I’m very type A as well and need everything to get done on time and perfectly. I get tied up in many small daily tasks as in making and bed and other things that could be put off that really don’t need to be done. During my first trimester of pregnancy, I didn’t clean the house or do a chore for about 2 weeks. I couldn’t even get myself to eat let alone do the laundry. I finally had to adapt the mantra “Only get down what really needs to get done today – the rest can wait”. I felt so much better once I stopped stressing about all the things I wanted to get down and only focused on what really had to be done.

  • Katie @ Peace Love and Oats August 16, 2011, 2:20 pm

    I’m the exact same way, I always want to get everything done so I work a little on everything and in the end, I get nothing done! I need to block schedule myself as well, that will be helpful with my second year of law school starting monday! Eek!!!

  • Baking N Books August 16, 2011, 2:20 pm

    Ah YES! Holy crap – yes. Story of my life.

    I reviewed the book “Get it down even when your Depressed” on my blog before – and it’s totally all about focusing and how to do it. Offers 50-odd strategies. I HIGHLY recommend it…although Lord knows I’m not practicing them now myself – but I’m just a basketcase anyways really 😉 (oh and it’s good for anyone – trust me – not just depressed people). Good knowledge for young people too!

    Does it irritate you when people think you have a perfect life? I get so upset and angry – like I have to keep explaining myself and defending myself – when someone says that “I’m lucky” and compares oneself, etc. They know nothing of the situation – and everyone’s issues are their own. It’s not right to compare or belittle.

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:50 am

      Naw it doesn’t bother me. I think that’s just the nature of blogging about part of your life. I feel very lucky and I am very blessed so it doesn’t bother me.

  • cathy August 16, 2011, 2:20 pm

    wow, all us type a’s are just having a great time with this post, caitlin! 🙂
    what works for me: setting up blocks of time (my default is one hour). what gets done (cleaning, blogging, emails, errands, fitness etc) gets done, then it’s time to move on. and surprisingly, the quality of what can get done is most often just fine!
    good luck with your workload – oh, and DEEP BREATHS, even just five of them, work wonders!

  • Mellissa August 16, 2011, 2:26 pm

    I have a pretty high stress job and am very Type A and have started making tasks for myself everyday and actually scheduling them on my calendar. It seems to help.

  • Hillary August 16, 2011, 2:30 pm

    Oh, God—I feel like this ALL THE TIME. I’m a teacher and a grad student, and sometimes I get so overwhelmed, I feel like I’m barely keeping my head above water. I find that it helps to make priority lists and stick to them: what needs to be done NOW and what can wait?

    Oh, and that moment of “me” time is necessary. Every day.

  • Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} August 16, 2011, 2:33 pm

    Oh yes. I have this problem all. the. time. I’m working on it, too!

  • CJ @ August 16, 2011, 2:33 pm

    Someone once told me you can do anything for ten minutes. I’m actually doing a post on it later this week but I am definitely a planner so I know if there’s something I have to do but am not looking forward to doing it I will schedule it into my day for ten minutes at a time. This may sound silly but when it comes to cleaning the bathrooms or doing other things I don’t love, it makes the to-do list seem so much more manageable 🙂

  • Khushboo August 16, 2011, 2:37 pm

    I literally just read an article about this earlier today- multitasking doesn’t work, prioritising does.  Rather than try to do a million tasks all at once, spending all your time and attention on each individually is much more efficient.  Hope you get a lot done today!

  • Ash @ Good Taste Healthy Me August 16, 2011, 2:39 pm

    I definitely have a hard time viewing the big picture. I get so wrapped up in the details. It’s a big fault of mine!

  • Ashley O. @ The Vegetable Life August 16, 2011, 2:46 pm

    Such a cute picture for operation beautiful!!!!

  • Freya August 16, 2011, 2:47 pm

    Oh GOSH yes! I literally cannot function if the dishwasher is full or a baking tray is left out! Sometimes it is soo much better to look at the bigger picture…
    Raw broccoli? That’s brave! That’s one of the few veggies I really don’t like raw :/

  • Mary @ Bites and Bliss August 16, 2011, 2:49 pm

    Yes! I get so caught up with what’s going on here and now that I forget what the big goal is. But yet, I tend to focus so much on the big goal that I lose touch with what’s going on right now, too. Guess it’s all about finding a balance!

  • Alex August 16, 2011, 3:03 pm

    I am so impressed by anyone who has ever written a book. I am always super stressed by silly 20 page University papers and I can’t even imagine to write a 200 something page book. Sometimes there are days when I am so stressed by the task that I start feeling guilty about everything I do besides working on the paper. At the same time it’s like my mind doesn’t even want to deal with it so I start procrastinating all day which makes the whole situation worse. Le sigh…

  • Rosa - Fitness, Food, Fulfilled August 16, 2011, 3:04 pm

    That stressed feeling is something I’ve been dealing with a lot lately. I feel like there are a ton of things on my plate and I’m not sure how to deal with it all, which makes me anxious. Blogging and training for a marathon are two big things I’ve added in the last few months, but they’re two things I love doing and keep me sane. Can’t we buy more hours in the day?

  • Erin August 16, 2011, 3:08 pm

    Hi Caitlin! I love the pic of you with your sticky notes! 🙂 I understand how sometimes life is just so overwhelming that even making the bed seems like climbing a mountain. I have found that keeping LOTS of visual reminders of the Big Picture really helps. I have my yearly goals posted above my desk, I have the same thing at my work desk, I keep quotes and sayings that motivate me everywhere and finally, I love just sitting with a cup of tea and some toast and day dreaming about the future. It gives me time to just think about my goals and where I want to be. After I always feel more focused and back on track. Good luck!!!!

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:53 am

      Great advice!

  • Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga August 16, 2011, 3:14 pm

    Does anyone else ever get bogged down by the day to day stuff and lose sight of the bigger project? = YES!

    I think everyone does. There are times when I spend so much time replying to blog commennts, emails, writing a blog post, doing “housekeeping” type of computer work and poof..HOURS and hours have evaporated and I think to myself, now why did I just do that rather than sitting on the couch, being with my daughter or husband, or doing just about anything else?! Getting so bogged down in the details. Omg…YES I can so relate.

    I need to remind myself take a step back. For sure.

  • Brittnie August 16, 2011, 3:26 pm

    I can totally relate to what you are saying. It is SO easy to get bogged down with all the day to day little stuff. I am total Type A. Blocking my time has really helped. At work I am in one department but with three different “jobs/positions” under that one umbrella. So…as you can imagine it is very easy to get caught up in a million little things and then before i know it the day is done and I still have HUGE things looming over my head. So some days I give myself permission to not answer my work phone from 8am-12pm so I can focus on a big task that needs attention. Then later that afternoon I will return emails and phone calls for a certain blocked time period (2-3:30pm for ex). This SO helps me focus and stay on task. And I can leave at 5pm knowing that some huge to do’s have been checked off the list!

  • Amanda@BlueDrishti August 16, 2011, 3:31 pm

    I used to be exactly like this in college. Luckily I find working full time is so much easier because I can’t really put off projects. Making lists really hepls me focus on getting things done. That way I can do the most important stuff first and if things further down don’t get done, I can still feel accomplished.

  • Amy August 16, 2011, 3:40 pm

    It’s so funny to hear that leaving the bed unmade or the dishes not done helps to ease your stress, because I am the total opposite–coming home to an unmade bed or a dirty sink total stresses me out more! 🙂 Hang in there, girl.

    Looks like that Operation Beautiful piece is going to be awesome…what a cool photo concept!

  • Mary August 16, 2011, 4:10 pm

    I feel that way too a lot of the time, I’m very type A and more often than not i lose sight of the big picture and get bogged down by tasky things. I’m trying to work on it though!

  • Emily August 16, 2011, 4:28 pm

    I’m glad you wrote this because I am NOTORIOUS for pretending like things are okay when I am reaching my last thread…and it is so necessary to let things go and focus on what’s important. I am SURE that you’re going to get through this and do phenomenal, the in-between time is rough but you have great support 🙂

  • Beth (Well I'll Be) August 16, 2011, 4:37 pm

    Yes totally, I think what you are doing is perfect though! Just focus on the task at hand and go from there! Focus is important, don’t let the little things distract you! A distraction is a distraction whether it’s making the bed or facebooking. Good luck with the book deadline!

  • Nicole August 16, 2011, 4:47 pm

    Love the cheese!

  • Michelle @ Turning Over a New Leaf August 16, 2011, 4:48 pm

    I get so bogged down by the “bigger” stuff (my 8-5 desk job) that the day to day stuff (housework) doesn’t get done, and I live in a mess, which just stresses me out.

    I’m working on securing a part-time job that gets me on my feet and at least exposes me to…windows. I’m thinking that will cure a lot of my stress+life-balancing issues!

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit August 16, 2011, 5:04 pm

    Great post! So many women feel the need to “do it all”- including me sometimes. And those small tasks (dishes, etc.) can add up and suck up all your time and energy for bigger, more important things!

  • Angela (Oh She Glows) August 16, 2011, 5:05 pm

    I’ve been doing the whole do less thing lately and it really DOES work! It hit me when a reader commented that my to do list was too overwhelming to work. And then it hit me, why not tackle a few things each day and feel more accomplished and less stressed than by half-assing everything on the list. It was a big lightbulb moment for me!

  • Jessica @ Jess Go Bananas August 16, 2011, 5:13 pm

    I do the EXACT SAME thing – with the time blocks! It has worked out perfectly thus far 🙂 The day to day stuff does become a drag after a while, but we always have to refocus on the bigger project at hand – which can be hard to do, but simple if we imagine how fabulous and accomplished we will feel when we get there! Love the quote! I have one for you:
    “You are beautiful; inside and out”-Anonymous

  • becca @ bellebottoms August 16, 2011, 5:24 pm

    I like to break for about 5-10 min every hour or so just to do something “fun”…or just to breathe! i can be sitting at my desk working, and then all of a sudden just feel tight…so i get up, walk the length of my building (which is about 1/2 a mile)…and then come back….refreshed!!

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin August 16, 2011, 5:54 pm

    Yes to your question! It’s just so hard to fit it all in. I’ve had to learn to let go and just leave some tasks unfinished for the day. But that drives me crazy. I swear it’s why I don’t sleep well at night haha. 😛

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen August 16, 2011, 5:58 pm

    Story of my life! Being on vacation is helping put the “bigger picture” back in perspective though. Now, if I can only remember it when I’m back home…

  • Anna August 16, 2011, 6:07 pm

    It’s so hard to let go of things and put things off till later (or never!) but I agree, it has to be done sometimes! I always use lists to keep things out of my head and organized.

  • Sara August 16, 2011, 6:30 pm

    Can totally relate to this. Glad you’re taking a day for yourself to focus.

  • Ali August 16, 2011, 7:24 pm

    I religiously read your blog mostly due to the fact that you are real. It doesn’t seem you ever try to be perfect or whatever, you are yourself and it’s refreshing and you are a great role model for those aspiring to lead a healthy life. Congrats!

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:54 am

      thank you ali, that is a really sweet comment. i appreciate it a lot!

  • Victoria (District Chocoholic) August 16, 2011, 7:32 pm

    I avoid getting bogged down in day to day nonsense by looking at my life for the week/month/season every Sunday night and mapping out what I want to do. It’s worth trying and helps me stay focused.

  • Michelle August 16, 2011, 7:38 pm

    I hear ya!! I just came across this website today. I rolled my eyes at it at first, but then I figured, I need a break and this thing says it has relaxing “moments”. Sounded perfect for my frazzled headed self. I’ve only done 2 of them, but I gotta say, it calmed and centered me and I felt like I had more perspective after.

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:55 am

      Ooooo looks awesome.

  • Heather @ Bake, Run, Live August 16, 2011, 7:40 pm

    When I am stressed, I make to-do lists. The most important stuff is listed first, then followed by stuff I would like to get done, but has little to no impact on others (like making the bed) if it doesn’t get done.

  • Courtney @ The Granola Chronicles August 16, 2011, 7:41 pm

    Third book?! Did I miss the announcement? What’s the topic?
    (sorry for the question overload!) 🙂

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:56 am

      It’s the Healthy Tipping Point book!

  • ksco August 16, 2011, 7:53 pm

    my boss gave me this card during an incredibly stressful time at work: “any idiot can live through a crisis, it’s the day to day living that wears you out”

    • CaitlinHTP August 17, 2011, 8:57 am

      bawhahah i love it.

  • Rachel August 16, 2011, 8:13 pm

    I actually make my work email passwords variations of “Focus” (with other stuff added in). It reminds me of the game plan every single time I log in.

  • Lauren August 16, 2011, 8:15 pm

    This post from the blog “zen habits” really helped me. Hang in there–you’ve got a lot of support behind you!

  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing August 16, 2011, 8:56 pm

    I love that. I have to remind myself that I am NOT perfect and I can’t do everything!

  • Kristin @ STUFT Mama August 16, 2011, 9:05 pm

    Oh man, I’m overwhelemed EVERY DAY! I need to follow your advice and leave some things behind and focus. Thanks for posting this so we all know we’re in the same boat sometimes. Love ths pic! And dang, I need to try that Mmmmm sauce. 🙂
    Hope the rest of your day was productive. 🙂

  • Christine @ BookishlyB August 16, 2011, 9:13 pm

    I HATE waking up stressed. I relish those 5 seconds between waking up and realizing what I have to do that today. After those 5 seconds everything goes to heck 🙂

  • Amber @ I Heart Colorado August 16, 2011, 9:17 pm

    I’ve been working really hard to manage stress this year. I’m a first-year teacher, and am a bit overwhelmed by the sheer amount of work I have. I could work all day, every day and still not accomplish everything on my to do list. But I’ve learned to take it one day at a time and not compare myself to others.

    I try to “be present.”

  • ashley @ ashley's adventures in alaska August 16, 2011, 10:53 pm

    I get bogged down every single day with the “too busy and stressed to do anything” attitude, and took charge today, actually. I’m not too busy… I’m just using my time incorrectly. So, today I suddenly had more time for running and cuddling my dogs. Who cares if the trash needs to be taken out and the fridge needs to be scrubbed? Not this girl. 🙂

  • Moni'sMeals August 16, 2011, 11:15 pm

    we all get bogged down, it is a myth when it seems someone has it all, or is perfect, or is maybe well rested! Life comes in phases and it is all about taking time out. Good job! I had a day like that today too.

  • peacebeme August 17, 2011, 3:05 am

    do less so you can do more, love it. hope you have less stress soon!

  • Lexi @ A Spoonful of Sunshine August 17, 2011, 3:35 am

    Agreed. I had a great day today, but my night was plagued by a baking semi-fail. That shouldn’t have made me feel like the whole day was unproductive, but unfortunately, it did 🙁

    I definitely need to focus on the bigger picture!

  • Sarah August 17, 2011, 3:59 am

    Lovely Caitlin, thanks for sharing your stress. I defo defo have days when I feel super stressed. Right now, I’m coming towards the end of my dissertation and I’m just working my butt off to get it done to a standard I’m happy with (and my supervisors are happy with). So, I’m stressed-Sarah at the mo, poor husband. Can’t imagine writing a book though; you’re awesome and I’m sure your book will be awesome too! You can do it 🙂

  • Lesley August 17, 2011, 7:01 am

    So funny, before I read your post, I just finished my post on being bogged down. Small world. You are great, and you will accomplish all your goals. Just remember that 🙂

  • Jenn August 17, 2011, 7:10 am

    story of my life. I get so caught up with the details that I often lose sight of the bigger picture.

    Making a schedule has certainly helped but, I think it’s important to actually write it down. I’m a total type A and although I can make a mental priority list it’s always more effective on paper. The type A in me can’t let items on a list go unaccomplished!

  • Sarah@The Flying ONION August 17, 2011, 8:32 am

    Sometimes I have so much stuff going on that I end up doing *nothing!* This was the case yesterday. I literally felt as if it was putting me in a daze, and I just couldn’t get out of it.

    You’re right, that sometimes we need to repicture the bigger goals! 😀

  • Taylor @ Crumbs Don't Count August 17, 2011, 8:50 am

    I am super type-A (my dad was military) so when I get stressed out over a dirty house or having too much on my plate at work I tell myself that stressing out just gets me flustered, makes me more unproductive/unfocused and wastes energy. If I calmly check one thing off my list at a time without stressing, I don’t waste extra brain cells worrying and just get it done!

  • Molly @ RDexposed August 17, 2011, 9:09 am

    You’re a person that the world needs.

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