There are always choices at play when it comes to stress.
Let’s take the example of the long ‘to-do’ list; the feeling of overwhelm that you’re never going to be able to get everything done.
First it must be noted that on at least one level, when this is the case, we have chosen to put ourselves in this position.
Even if your boss ‘dumped’ a bunch of projects onto you, you choose to work here.
Of course some choices are not so easily undone, but, they are choices, and it’s helpful to remember that.
But then, assuming that you want to keep working on this list, the next big choice you can make is how you approach it.
You can choose to ‘feel like there’s too much to do’. Or not.
One alternative is ‘knowing that there’s plenty of time for the most important things’.
Many less important things can wait or be dealt with switfly, later.
Slow and steady focus, without panic, on what’s most important, 90% of the time (in my experience) can move mountains.
It’s not just a Jedi mind trick to tell yourself that there is enough time.
Even if that’s to tell certain people that you won’t complete something as projected, at least that’s a burden unloaded right there.
A third kind of choice you can make is the choice to fix, or not to fix, systems that are broken.
If you’re finding yourself in a this position on a recurring basis, you may have to decide to stop everything for a moment, and fix the process itself, so that you can move forward with more ease tomorrow instead.