Episode 439: 5 Steps To Become Someone Who Can Handle A Lot (Without Overwhelm or Burnout)

If you’re constantly feeling overwhelmed, lost or behind then this episode is for you – especially if you find yourself pushing off tasks that are relatively easy to do or that struggles in your personal life are taking energy away from your business. Tune in to learn 5 practical steps to become someone who can handle a lot (without overwhelm or burnout).

Find the full episode transcript and show notes at samlaurabrown.com/episode439.

In This Episode You’ll Learn:

  • 5 steps to truly become someone who can handle a lot
  • How to upgrade your self-image around what you’re capable of handling
  • Why perfectionists are secretly addicted to feeling incapable and behind
  • Why creating evidence you’re capable isn’t enough and what to do instead
  • A recent situation I coached myself through so I could handle a lot

Featured In The Episode:

Watch My Free Training: How To Plan Properly As A Perfectionist With Power Planning

If you want to get shit done without burning out, I invite you to watch the free training I’ve created on how to plan properly as a perfectionist with Power Planning. 

By the end of the training, you’ll be ready to start using Power Planning today to get your perfectionist mindset on your side so you can get out of your own way. Go to samlaurabrown.com/plan to watch the training today.

Take The Perfectionism Quiz To Get Your Personalised Perfectionism Score

If you’re not sure whether perfectionism is what’s making you get in your own way, I invite you to take The Perfectionism Quiz. 

After working with over 1,000 perfectionist entrepreneurs, I created this free quiz so you can get your personalised perfectionism score and discover which of the 5 areas of perfectionism you would most benefit from working on overcoming the most: whether it’s overthinking, procrastination, burnout, all-or-nothing thinking or fear of judgement.

It takes less than 3 minutes to get your unique result and be one step closer to getting shit done without burning out. If you love learning about yourself and you’re ready to get out of your own way, go to samlaurabrown.com/quiz to take the quiz today. 

Work With Me:

My coaching program Perfectionists Getting Shit Done (aka PGSD) teaches you how to plan properly as a perfectionist so you can get out of your own way in your business. Enrollment for our April 2024 cohort will be happening from 14 – 21 March 2024. 
To find out more about the program and be the first to know when the doors open, join the waitlist today: samlaurabrown.com/pgsd.

Listen To The Episode

Listen to the episode on the player above, click here to download the episode and take it with you or listen anywhere you normally listen to podcasts – just find Episode 439 of The Perfectionism Project Podcast!

Subscribe To The Perfectionism Project Podcast


Hi, and welcome to another episode of The Perfectionism Project. A podcast full of perfectionism advice for entrepreneurs. My name is Sam Laura Brown, I help entrepreneurs release their perfectionism handbrake, so they can get out of their own way and build a fulfilling and profitable business. I’m the founder of the perfectionist getting shit done group coaching program, which is otherwise known as PGSD. And for even more perfectionism advice to help you with your business, you can follow me on Instagram @perfectionismproject.

Sam Laura Brown

In today’s episode, I’m going to be sharing how to become someone who can handle a lot without feeling overwhelmed. And without burning out. This is a really important self image to develop. If you’re a perfectionist entrepreneur, if you want to get shit done, and you want to do that in a sustainable feel good way, then you need to change the way that you are thinking about yourself. So that that becomes natural and effortless for you.

So in this episode, I’m going to be sharing those five steps with you, so that you can become someone who can handle a lot. So this is something that I observe in myself and also in a lot of my clients inside perfectionist getting shit done, that we can handle a lot. And yet, we don’t think we can. It’s like this mismatch of our self image. And what we’re actually capable of, we haven’t upgraded the self image to reflect what we can actually do. So we are walking around believing that we are someone who can’t handle things, when we can oftentimes when we are handling them, and we are handling them sufficiently and even more than sufficiently, but because we’re not doing it perfectly, we have this real all or nothing definition around what it means to be capable and to be someone who can get shut down who can handle things. And who can do that, without it being overwhelming or burning us out that we deny ourselves of that self image.

And if you don’t know much about self image, it’s something I talk about quite a lot. We work on it in my program. Because your self image, the story you tell about yourself to yourself and to others, is what is going to determine what feels easy and effortless and natural for you and what doesn’t. We always act in accordance with who we believe we are. And if we’re acting out of accordance with who we believe we are, we self sabotage and getting out of the way. So we can go back to what is normal for us. We want to be certain about who we are, even when that isn’t helpful to us.

So we would rather be certain that we are incapable than being capable and going into that uncertainty. So what I observe is that we put too much on our plates so that we can manufacture overwhelm and burnout and prove ourselves, right, that we can’t actually handle things. And we find that feeling incapable feels more comfortable than feeling capable. And I know that sounds kind of crazy. But if you think about perfectionism, and that it really is a strategy to avoid shame.

But because we are so in shame, and we feel so inadequate, and so insufficient, that’s why we want to avoid more shame, because we already feel like we have too much of it that is so comfortable for us to be in the world of insufficiency inadequacy. And this can manifest in lots of ways that look really good by always seeing ways that things could be improved or optimize, having big goals, all of that kind of thing. But really, ultimately, we don’t feel comfortable feeling capable. And that is something that you need to develop and expand.

And then going through the five steps that I’m going to be talking about in this episode, and you can begin doing this today is something that will help you get more comfortable with feeling capable, so that you can handle the situations in your life so that you can handle working towards the big goals and the big dreams that you have without overwhelm without burning yourself out.

So some of the thoughts that create this situation where we don’t believe we can handle things and we don’t handle things. So where we want to is I don’t know how to do this. It’s more than I can handle. I don’t have the bandwidth. I’ve never done this before. It’s a lot other people don’t have to do this. This is too much. And I’ve noticed myself in the last 12 months, the twins Jack and James, and nearly a year old. I also have Lydia who’s a toddler as well. But since having three kids, I noticed how much my brain has love to be in this story of it’s a lot.

It’s more than I can handle like comparing my life today with my life a few years ago when I didn’t have kids and I didn’t have as much to handle so to speak, that I find myself being in this self image at times of I can’t handle things and it’s so interesting to me because I know objectively that I can and I’m doing a great job at it. But my self image hasn’t fully caught up. And so in the last few months in particular, I have been doing the work that I’m going to be sharing with you, in this episode, the five steps to upgrade my self image to reflect the reality that I can actually handle a lot. And I can do that without getting overwhelmed without burning out without overworking, I can actually just do it. And it’s not a problem.

So let’s go through what these five steps are. And just know that this is all about creating a self image for yourself, that you are someone who is capable. I’ve noticed for myself that when I’m feeling overwhelmed, which I’ve talked about overwhelm, it’s very emotional for a perfectionist, so often, I mean, shame ultimately, really is, but we generate this overwhelm. And I have noticed when I’ve been doing a lot more work recently exploring my feelings and distinguishing different feelings from one another, that for me, overwhelm isn’t actually the feeling it’s incapable.

When I’m feeling overwhelmed, I’m actually feeling incapable, but it’s more comfortable to feel overwhelmed about things than it is to feel incapable, even though they’re very similar. So what we want to do is create a self image and identity, a self concept, that you are someone who is capable of a lot, you can handle a lot, and you can handle it well. And this is, especially this episode is especially for people who are showing up, you’re doing things like you’re not doing it perfectly, you get in your own way, and all of that, so do I, but you are actually doing a great job and your brain just needs to catch up.

So you can normalize that and stop manufacturing so much overwhelm and burnout for yourself, our brains, they are going to have thoughts that create those feelings. But we add all these extra on top, when we have the self image when we have the belief about ourselves that we aren’t capable, we just add this whole extra layer of pain and struggle that doesn’t need to be there. So these are the five steps that you need to follow.

First of all, number one, accept that you have the desire to handle a lot without getting overwhelmed or burning out. And this is rather than wishing that you didn’t have a lot to handle. So something I’ve noticed is that my brain, I just love to be like, Ah, imagine if I just didn’t have so much to handle if I didn’t have such big goals or so many things that I wanted to do, or so many little humans to look after. Like imagine what that would be like, and really I have what I want, I have the life that I have created intentionally. And yet my brain likes to forget that and kind of pretend to myself that I don’t actually want to have a lot on my plate.

So instead of trying to and there’s different approaches. One way is to take an approach of actually, it’s not a lot. Another approach is it is a lot and I can handle a lot and I like having a lot. So you have if you’re someone you have big goals and dreams, you have things going on in your life, maybe you have a full time job, physical or mental health issues, kids, you’re moving all of the above you also if you’re someone who likes having multiple balls in the air, you want to move multiple projects forward at once. To think most perfectionists are like that we like being busy, we like getting shit done.

We like making progress, that if you actually like having a lot, I’ve just found it so helpful to stop denying that reality and actually just be like, I like having a lot on my plate. And that’s not a problem. And I’m going to stop pretending that I wished I didn’t have those things on my plate. So that’s step one is just accepting that you have the desire to handle a lot. Number two is to see how it is true that you create situations that allow you to feel incapable. So I mentioned that we have these thoughts that generate feelings for ourselves of being overwhelmed, being incapable and those feelings lead to burnout, that we create this, we manufacture this to prove ourselves right.

That’s how self image and identity works. That we prove to ourselves that we are right about who we are because we like having that certainty that we at least know ourselves. Even if we’re doing things we don’t like doing, we at least can rely on ourselves to show up in a certain way. So when we have that self image or whatever self image you have, you will have so many it’s however you finished the sentence I am I’m the kind of person who I always I never those statements are statements of self image, and we prove them to be true. We believe them. That belief creates a feeling that feeling creates a range of actions that ultimately prove it.

So in this example, if we have the belief that we are not capable so for example, I might have the belief I’m not capable. This is too much. The feeling that generates for me is incapable or overwhelmed. And then the actions that I take from that place will have me actually create a situation for myself that I can’t handle it is too much for me. So here are some signs that this is happening, here are some things to look for. But ultimately, what we’re willing to do is just up our level of self awareness and see how it’s true, that we create for ourselves situations that allow us to feel incapable.

We love feeling incapable, as weird as that sounds, we love that feeling is comfortable, its familiar. And so we generate it for ourselves. And we create circumstances that make it easy to think thoughts that create that feeling. So for example, adding something extra to your plate. As soon as you feel on top of everything. This is something that I definitely notice that I’ve had the habit of doing. As soon as I feel like everything’s handled, I subconsciously just start adding more I commit to other things, I raise the bar for how I want to do certain things, because it feels so uncomfortable to just be handling it.

If you schedule more in your calendar, then you have time for or you’re constantly squeezing things in, rather than just prioritizing, deciding what’s important and what you’re going to leave for later. And getting it done. We love just adding extra things like okay, like maybe I can do that if everything goes fine, and there are no hiccups. And I can do this or I can do that. But if you are scheduling more in your calendar than you have time for you are doing that, to allow yourself to feel incapable to feel like you’re always behind.

So if you push things off, that it easy to complete, so you can feel behind, that’s one to notice as well. And we’re not consciously being like I want to feel behind. So let me push this off. But if you notice that there are things that maybe will take you five minutes, if that and you push them off week after week, after week after week, you love feeling behind, and I’ll link up in the show notes and episode I did called, “How to cure your addiction to feeling behind”. We love this feeling of being behind of feeling incapable because it’s so uncomfortable for us to feel sufficient and capable.

So you might be putting things off just to further feed into that self image and prove to yourself that you’re right about who you are, that you can’t handle things that you’re not on top of things that you are someone who gets overwhelmed that you are someone who burns out, maybe you are creating a mess while you’re in the process of cleaning one up. So I noticed this last night. And as part of what inspired me to record this episode today that I was cleaning up my office and just tidying things and putting them back into their home.

And as I was doing that I was putting things that need to be put away from Christmas. In the spare room, I put most of the Christmas things away. But there’s just a couple of things that needs to be put away. And I put them in the spare room that has all these odds and ends that I need to go through and create a storage system in the cupboard so that things aren’t just sitting on the bed in there, and all of that. And instead of actually just putting those Christmas things away in their ultimate home, which would take the same amount of time. I put them on the bed in a spare room.

And it’s just that whole idea of like, not wanting to be on top of everything and just have it all organized. It’s almost like it feels like well, what would I do with my time if everything was just organize it in its place? And the answer to that is I need to figure out what I would do with my time once all of those little things are done. And because I don’t have a clear answer to that, or the answer to that is uncomfortable. And I’m not allowing myself to see the answer to that. So that I can continue avoiding that, that I’m then just creating another mess. So I can be busy with that I have to put that in my power planning that I have to organize a spare room and do all these different things, instead of just keeping it organized.

And I’ve come so far with so many things I’m sharing, but I still notice myself doing them. And I’m still doing this work to constantly uplevel my self image around what I can handle. Also, if you’re telling yourself you don’t know how to do something, instead of just figuring it out. That is another sign that you are creating a situation to allow yourself to feel incapable if you say I just can’t put my finger on it. I just don’t know what to do. Like if you’re in that confusion, especially if you’re in it for more than a few days, or even a day, like a lot of us are in that for weeks and months. But that is a sign that we prefer feeling incapable currently.

And that’s just because of the self image that we have. We believe that we as someone who can’t handle a lot when actually the evidence is that we can and I love how you know people talk about just create enough evidence for something that you will believe it like if you want to believe that you’re capable of something, just have the evidence that like do things to prove that to yourself and you will believe that you’re capable. But there’s actually that next step that you have to take because your brain isn’t just going to automatically believe it. If it is bias towards insufficiency and inadequacy and seeing things in that light, that you will dismiss all of that evidence.

So you can be right that you are someone who is not capable of Yeah, anyone else could do that. And I didn’t do it perfectly, I want to do this thing or that thing, like, we just explained it away. So just because you don’t believe it doesn’t mean the evidence, isn’t there? Yes, you need to create evidence for your beliefs. But then you also need to train your brain to see that evidence. Otherwise, you will just ignore it, distort it, you will dismiss it, you will tell a story, so that that evidence doesn’t count. We aren’t generous with ourselves about evidence if it contradicts our self image that we have.

So to share a few specific examples in a second, I’m going to talk about this third step and go into a bit more detail. So step three, is to choose a specific situation that feels like a lot and access your capability. So when those first few steps, were just accepting, we want to handle a lot. And then we are seeing how it might be true that we have generated this in capability. And it’s not actually the reality. But I found it so helpful to notice how I am capable of handling things. But then I just add this extra criteria to it, or I create mess as well.

And cleaning messes up where I push off easy things to do. So that I can be in that feeling of incapabilities. So it’s just so helpful to have that awareness. So in this third step, and then step four, and five as well, we are actually creating that self image that we are capable. So step three is to choose a specific situation that feels like a lot, and access your capability. So I’ll share a couple of specific examples that I have been through very recently that I have done this with, and it has been so powerful.

So I really want to paint that picture for you. But part of accessing capability is letting go of shoulds insurance and not pretending that you’re living your life in front of a panel of judges, a lot of us are capable of doing things. But we don’t let ourselves do it the way we want to do it. Because we shouldn’t do it that way. So in the examples I share, because it relates to kids, screen time is something that I use, we have screens on we have TV, we put it on. And yet, because I have this story still in there, I shouldn’t be doing that, that when I’m doing it, I’m feeling guilty about it. And then when I’m doing it, I’m not actually doing it as strategically as I could be doing it.

So I’m not actually getting the benefits from it that I could be getting from it, the kids aren’t getting the benefits from it that they could be getting from it. And so just know with this part of accessing your capability, and your ability, like your resourcefulness, your problem solving skills, your resilience, all of that might have you having to let go of something that you were telling yourself, you should or shouldn’t do. So to share the specific examples, and I’m going to share actually myself coaching that I did I think it was on Saturday, I went to the library with me and the three kids. And we had a great morning.

But when we came back, I was just feeling very irritable because everyone was crying, Jack, James and Lydia were all crying at once. And I was having the thought and I know this because I did the self coaching. After I was having the thought this is too much. I’m overstimulated. That thought created the feeling of being irritable. And then here’s the action I took from that place of being irritable. I was snapping at Lydia, I was dissociating from the crane, like I could feel myself like almost leaving my body to be able to handle everyone cried at me at once. I was repeating myself through clenched teeth at Lydia like tried to have her do what I wanted her to do. I was snapping at cotton’s, cotton’s our dog.

And I was just like telling him to get out and I just wasn’t doing it in a way that I liked. I was leaving messages behind me like as I was cleaning up things when we were having lunch, I wasn’t actually cleaning it up effectively. I was huffing and puffing, like I noticed I was actually going like, like I was exhaling and just kind of really expressing trying to like express to myself how irritated I was and how frustrated I was. I was remembering life before I had kids and like what that was like I was also forcing my way through the situation.

And then also other action that I take from that thought, is overstimulating myself during breaks. So for example, if I have time when it’s like naptime, then I’ll be like listening to podcasts and like having all these inputs, like this long list of things that I want to do to just like, try and keep myself overstimulated, even though I’m not wanting to feel overstimulated, isolating myself from friends, like not reaching out being like, Hey, does anyone else want to come? putting on a brave face doing what I think a good mom would do ignoring my capabilities and the result of that, is that I overstimulate my self and I’m make myself irritable.

But this whole experience that I had like this is too much. That was part of that self image of I’m not someone who can handle this. I’m not someone who can handle a lot. And then this is the self coaching that I did. Well, first of all, seeing that was so helpful, like just saying, Okay, what is the actual feeling I’m having, because the feeling of being overstimulated isn’t actually a feeling for me, it might be for some, but for me, that’s not the feeling the feeling that I have when I think I’m overstimulated is irritable.

And so when I could get present with that, and see what that was creating, and I didn’t want to keep creating that, and there’s, by the way, everyone had gone to bed and have a nap time, I was like, Okay, I need to just like, go to myself and create a different feeling for myself, because otherwise this afternoon is not going to be fun. So what I did, and this is all in the self coaching model that Brooke Castillo from The Life Coach School teachers, which is having on a page I write down C for circumstance, T for thought, F for feeling, A for action and R for result, I will link up an episode of her podcast where she talks about what this is if you want to use it as a self coaching tool.

But I write down so for example, the circumstance was Jack, James and Lydia, are crying, the thought that I wanted to have is I’ve got this, I’m capable of handling this, the feeling that generates for me is capable. And then this is the action that I take in that situation when I’m feeling capable. So the situation hasn’t changed. This is me changing the way I’m thinking about it and thinking about myself so as to take different action and create a different result. So the action I would take is assessing the entire situation.

And triaging basically like deciding who I need to cuddle, who I need to settle what I need to do, and all of that kind of thing, allowing myself to use music to help calm everyone. So in that morning, I’d be like, I don’t want to have any TV on I don’t wanna have any music on I usually play music, if I’m playing it through YouTube, I don’t want to do that. So I was just like, kind of creating this unnecessary situation for myself of like telling myself, I’m not allowed to do that.

So I have to just like figure out a different way, when really, it works, I don’t actually have a problem with it. But I just kind of imagined and this goes back to like living your life in front of an imaginary panel of judges of like, well, I shouldn’t be doing that, when objectively like that doesn’t make sense. I would reflect and identify how to make the situation easier to handle next time, which is what I was doing in that moment, as well self coaching, identify what support I need and ask for it take care of myself so that I can access my capability.

And that was a huge part of the plan that I created from this, remove what’s non-essential, put Jack in the carry out and go for a walk while everyone else is sleeping because he woke up from the nap early. And so I just put him in the carrier. And I went for a walk up and down the driveway. We live on acreage, and we have a lot of bush and everything around us and I love being out in nature. But I had been in this mindset of like, well, I can’t go for a big walk in nature when I have all the kids myself because practically like with the prime and with everything, and having a toddler walking with it, like it’s just not the same.

But I was like I could actually use put Jack in the carrier and I can walk up and down the driveway, which is practically the same experience as being on a bush trail. So I did that cool text friends a moment of need, prioritize my wellness over the state of the house. So prioritize looking after me over like tidying up things, get support with anything that I need support with increase my capacity to feel good feelings, like those are the actions that I take when I’m feeling capable. And the result is that I’ve got it that I can handle that situation.

So from that self coaching and just seeing how my thoughts were creating my feelings and act as a result and what I could create instead. And I could believe that thought that I’ve got this because I have handled that situation hundreds of times before with not as much capability as what I mentioned that but I have definitely handled it. And so from that place, what I was able to do is I access my capability. And then that had me creating more capability. So then I made a plan for Okay, what am I going to do this afternoon.

So instead of being the situation that kind of comes from that thought of like this is too much I’m overstimulated. This is a lot, I can’t handle it to the nighttime routine when Steve is working, had been kind of like starting it out about five 530. Maybe we go to the park in the afternoon. Like I wasn’t strict with the time and I don’t like to be strict with the time of things. I think this is my philosophy, at least I say it’s often like, the key to have a lot of little words, is just to never be in a rush to go anywhere.

If you’re not in a rush, you know so much. So I don’t like to have strict times with the eggs. But I also like to have benchmark times to just know kind of how long things will take and where we’re going to end up timewise with bedtime and reverse engineering. So instead of having things go like kind of allowing bedtime and sorry, bath time and all of that to be later, I was like okay, well I’m going to do that I’m actually feeling in this place of being capable. I’m wanting to be present with the kids and wanting to take care of myself so that I can be as capable and present as possible, the plan I made. And this was me accessing my capability for a situation that normally felt like a lot, which is doing the bedtime routine.

And even though I’ve definitely figured out a lot with that, that it was still feeling like I wasn’t in complete control of it obviously controls always an illusion, I’m never in control three little ones. But at the same time, like I wanted to have a feeling of capability around it. And I was able to create that. And this is a plan that I created for myself, and I’m sharing this specific, there’s not this isn’t about like, how to do it. Or if you have kids, this is what you should be doing.

This is just an example of how to access your capability. So what I decided what I realized when I actually took the time to study the situation and only took like five minutes, but to think about like, if I really wanted to be able to have everyone in bed by 715, and have the house clean and have me enjoy that experience, what would need to happen like I’m solving for those things. So I’d start by time at 430, like half an hour earlier than normal. And I would have dinner heating up while we’re doing not have dinner at 515. And then put a show on TV for the kids for 30 minutes.

And this actually was like life changing for me to do this and realize I could do this, like give myself permission to do this was putting a show on. And like, again, it’s not like we’re not putting TV on before but I wasn’t doing it. And actually thinking about how can I do this to take care of myself, not just as a side project, but really intentionally. So I put on Blippi, which is the main thing we’re watching at the moment on YouTube. And then I put one earphone in, I turn on Hamish and Andy and I set a timer for 30 minutes, and I just allow myself to clean up and I’m just keeping an eye on everyone, everyone’s fine.

And I just allow myself like to have everything cleaned up knowing that at 615, I would feed the twins, and then I’d be able to turn off the TV and we’d all be able to like read books together and do all of that get everyone in bed and then when they go down for bed and actually have a clean house and would be everyone would be in bed on time, so to speak, roughly speaking, and I would have handled it and allow myself to be in that versus putting everyone down a little bit late and then having to clean the house. And then it’s like 815, and then I’m practically going to bed at night.

And so I’m not feeling like I have any time and then I’m feeling more and more depleted with every time that I do that. And so I’m getting less and less ability to access my capability. And so just by being able to change the thought and my self image around how much I can handle, I was able to take a situation and create a different reality and experience without anyone else having to change. No one else in that situation had to behave any differently to how they were behaving, I was just able to change the way I was thinking about myself and what I could handle, which allowed me to create a different plan.

So that was so so so empowering to go through. And it made me realize I have been doing that quite a bit. But that was such a distinct experience. For me. Another example from yesterday, related to kids, because this is really where I’m doing a lot of this work also with the business too. But having the three little ones has really shown me where I need to upgrade my self image around what I’m capable of, and have that be aligned with what I’m actually capable of, and also increased my capability through doing that.

So picking up all three kids from daycare by myself, the twins have just started daycare. So just noticing like me having that experience on the weekend with changing the bedtime routine. And all of that had me going into this situation of like, okay, well, how can I solve for this? And on the way to daycare, I was having a conversation with Steve of like, okay, so I want to be able to pick up the kids by myself. Because I was hands I need to be able to do that. So okay, let’s talk about what that could look like. What can we trial? Okay, do we have one in the carrier one on the hip? Walk with Lydia? Do we go in first and get the bags? Or do we go to the end? Get the bags, take them to the car come back? Like what are all the different kinds of situations? What are we going to trial today?

And then also asking myself like, who can I get support from? What support do I need to give myself to make this possible? How long might this take to figure it out? That’s such an important one to look at. Like when we’re really accessing our own capability. We don’t just expect that we should try it once and it works perfectly and instantly. It’s like, okay, it’s probably going to take me two to three weeks to really get a handle on how to actually pick them all up and not have it be stressful or a lot, so to speak in my own experience.

And I’m going to give myself that expectation versus doing it once Oh, that was stressful. Okay, well, now I have to figure out how to not do it by myself or I have to limit with myself every time I do it or like work myself up to be able to do it. And part of it as well that question of what support do I need to give myself to make this possible having comfortable clothes with a pocket. Good, knowing what we’re having for dinner, bringing a snack for Lydia. And so it’s these questions whether it’s in your personal life, or in your business, a lot of times we manufacture not handling things in our personal life to distract us from handling things in the business that we feel like we can’t handle either in the business.

So it might be a personalized thing that you were feeling like you can’t handle your life admin, all that but it’s like all these questions of okay, how can I solve for this? What are the options? What can I trial? Who can I get support? From what support do I need to give to myself to make this possible? How long might it take to figure this out? Like, what expectation do I want to have around that, that allows us to take something that feels like a lot, and actually have the experience with it be completely different, to if we’re thinking this is a lot and I can’t handle it, we’re not trying to change it to like, this isn’t a lot. It’s, it’s a lot and I can handle a lot.

And I can handle a lot without being overwhelmed without being stressed without burning out without abandoning myself and completely neglecting myself. Like when I was actually accessing my capability around getting the kids to bed. Part of that was like, well, I need to have my own emotional world, intact in line, I need to support myself with that if I am just completely overwhelming myself, over simulating myself, or de-prioritizing myself, I can’t actually show up fully to them. And I know a lot of us understand intellectually, but it’s like, okay, that means I need to put on the TV. And in that time, enjoy cleaning up and tidying things up, put on a podcast that makes me laugh, and it’s just like light hearted. I’m not trying to like learn any information. It’s just like, adult conversation. But I haven’t had all day that I can just have in my ear, that I can just start and stop at anytime I’m not trying to like mentally optimize, in the business with what I’ve learned from that is just like, having that support for myself is something that when I’m feeling incapable I don’t give to myself.

And so when you’re looking at this, it will be looking at what support do you need to give to yourself, so that you can increase your capability and you can access more of your capability. And it will involve prioritizing yourself and deprioritizing others. And that is a beautiful thing that you are worth prioritizing. Number four, is to normalize handling a lot. And this is all about your self talk. And so what I like to do with the self image work, is as I said, with the evidence, you’ve got to notice the evidence for it to count or your brain will just dismiss it. And it’s going to feel a little bit delusional if you really have a strong self image around something to begin changing that you’re going to feel like I’m just not telling the truth about the situation. But I find it really helpful to be specific. So for example, just saying to myself, like of course, I figured out how to have a nighttime routine with three kids under three when it’s me by myself, where I’m doing everything and I’m supporting myself and looking after myself and I feel energized.

It’s not to say, every day, we’re gonna feel that way. But I can actually figure out how to do that instead of being in self pity about it, letting myself believe it’s more than I can handle and then creating a situation that’s more than I can handle. So of course, I figured that out. And I wonder what else I can figure out. And just normalizing as well, that feeling of feeling capable, and noticing, like, what does that feel like in your body. And I noticed that when I am with that feeling of feeling capable, I like want to go and do something to like self sabotage. Like I want to go and eat something sweet or like do all these things. And it’s like just takes that feeling away from me that I can give myself something to beat myself up over or feel bad about or whatever and go back to that insufficiency.

But just allowing it to be in my body, even if it’s just for a minute is so powerful. So you want to talk to yourself like of course I figured that out. Of course I can handle a lot. Look at me go and it sounds weird to say that I think sometimes we’re like I don’t even know how to talk to myself like yes you do you talk to yourself all day long. Usually just say shit to yourself. Now he does not say true to yourself, at least in this moment. And we are saying something different. You do know how to talk to yourself. So that’s step four, normalize handling a lot. Tell yourself that look for and find and confirm the evidence.

And the more you do this, the more evidence you will see like oh yeah, I handle this and oh yeah, I handled that. Oh yeah, I handled that. And you will also notice when you are creating those situations of you not handling things and you will be able to redirect yourself and course correct. So for example, if you are someone and people pleasing too big thing for perfectionism, if you are someone who tends to say yes to things that you want to say no to, you will start noticing yourself saying no. Or if you say yes, you will then be able to course correct and go to that person and say No, I said yes, actually I can’t I’m really sorry, or whatever that is. So that’s step number four, normalize, handling a lot. Have that self talk with yourself. Feel that feeling in your body of being capable.

And then notice is the fifth step. Notice how you began to get pulled towards handling things. This is your sign that yourself image is changing. So I just mentioned a bit about that. But for example, when it comes to like that spare room situation that I mentioned, and I think like most of us have that kind of spare room situation. But that spare room with all the odds and ends, I just had found myself in this real all or nothing mindset about like, I need to have this big chunk of time so that I can completely organize it all. And of course, because of the way I’m seeing myself as being someone who isn’t capable, I’m not then creating that time, or creating the circumstances. I’m just being like, Oh, well, I have kids and whatever, and I can’t do it, when really, I can just say, I have two kids, I could hire a babysitter, there are so many different things I could do to solve that.

I could hire someone to organize it. But instead, it’s just like, oh, no, I can’t do it in my way. But instead of being an all or nothing mindset, it’s just like, Okay, well, I’m actually just going to choose like, I noticed I have 10 extra minutes. And this is what happened during that 30 minutes I had, when I was listening to podcasts, and I had time for cleaning up the house, it was clean in 20 minutes to where I want it to be, I was like, Okay, I have 10 extra minutes. And I’m going to allow myself to just enjoy cleaning for 10 more minutes. So I’m going to go and get the twins, close it in that room that need organizing, so they can be put away, I’m going to go and do that.

And instead of having to like clean that whole room at once and organize it all, I’m just going to allow myself to do a little bit of it, have that be done, I got it done, it felt so good as well to just be handling it like to be handling things. So I want to encourage you to notice where you have that evidence. And as you create that evidence to just notice yourself feeling pulled towards it. Like I didn’t have to force myself or motivate myself to do that. Because I had handled something that day with actually changing the way that I was viewing myself and creating a different reality for myself.

It was then like, Okay, well, I wonder what else I could handle. And then I was handling it and I was being pulled towards it. And that’s the most beautiful thing I find about self image is that when your self image, your identity, your self concept, whatever you want to call it, when that is where you want it to be, you don’t have to motivate yourself, you don’t have to force yourself, you don’t need to use willpower. Those are things we need to use when we are trying to act out of alignment with who we believe we are.

When you are just the person who handles a lot without getting overwhelmed or burning out. That’s just who you are, you are naturally pulled towards doing that. So I hope this has been helpful to hear about my experiences as well. I have been going through it with learning how to handle a lot. Just noticing how in my head I can find myself saying like, this is a lot like this is more than I’ve ever had to do this more than other people have to do like just this whole pity party that is confirmed, like whenever I leave the house, there are people every time I leave the house, we’re like how you have your hands full and like all of that.

And it’s so easy to just buy into that and believe that and to also feel like well, I have to be not handling it because everyone’s telling me like it’s so much to handle. And that like I should really feel proud of myself for handling it because it’s so much and it’s I guess I should feel proud of myself. But also like I can handle it. And I don’t have to kind of be in this relationship with myself where I’m denying that I have a skill set that I have. So yeah, I hope it’s been helpful. And also I want to mention as well, that if you want to learn how to start power planning, which is really going to help if you are a perfectionist entrepreneur, you want to get shit done without burning out a big part of that is learning how to plan your week properly as a perfectionist.

And so I teach power planning, there are three steps to power hour, little tweaks, and weekly review. And in the free training that I’ve created that you can go and watch right now. You can learn the three simple steps of power planning and get started with it right away. So if you go to samlaurabrown.com/plan to sign up for that I will leave a link in the show notes for you as well. So many people have watched this free training and started power planning and immediately notice the difference and then being able to sustain it. It’s about creating sustainable productivity that gets you to your goals that actually feels good as well. So go and watch that training ASAP. I hope you’re having a beautiful day and I’ll talk to you in the next episode.

Author: Sam Brown