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65. Dudeism and How to Deal with Overwhelm?

Breathe out the bullshit, dudes...

If you've read any of my earlier posts you will know there's usually a stack of shit to be done and it continues to pile up. I live alone and share the care of my two young kids, and I am self-employed.

I won't go through what I have lined up to do now but just that I was with my kids in the garden yesterday searching out wild strawberries. I saw that I needed to finish mowing the garden path, and that the birch trees around the gas tank need to be cut back, and one of them cut down.

Just adding extra to the pile.

How do I deal with it, when I know I can't get it all done?

Firstly, I bring my thinking back to the small. I go granular. I ignore the mass of stuff to do and just focus on one. It's a little like the samurai idea of being attacked by multiple people. They used the following metaphor to get the message across.

If a hawk looks at a flock of birds it comes away with none, but if it focuses only on a single bird, it gets the kill.

So, I forget, or overlook, the stack of shit as much as possible. Sure, I live in an old house that needs stuff done, I've got a big garden that is difficult to maintain, I've got young children to care for half of the week... and so on.

All a story man.

And I don't want it to become "my" story.

So, I remember the To Dude List.

I make sure there's some chilled-out, do-nothing, aimless stuff there to keep me sane. I can't be 100% on the go. I'm not a robot. I'm 56 years old, should be slowing down, should be enjoying my garden, my life, instead of identifying with the shit that must be done.

MUST be done?

Who says must?

The next time you are feeling overwhelmed focus only on one thing and do that. When that's done enjoy a breather, then if you have the energy, focus on the next one. Approach each single task as though there is nothing more to do. Breathe into the "doing" like a monk sat on a Zafu cushion. All one action. No separation.

And sure, things won't get done. Things will fall off at the end of the day but that's likely to happen anyway, right?

Take it easy.

Rev. Thomo


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