There are times when it feels like everything is happening all at once all around us. Although I try to prevent overscheduling as much as I can, sometimes it’s just impossible to do. There are events and dates that I can’t change, and other people that I don’t want to let down. What’s more, I find that when it rains, it pours in this regard, and one thing just keeps piling on top of another.

In fact, a serious bout of overscheduling is happening to me at the moment. There are so many things occurring simultaneously- for myself, my children, my business, and my clients. This weekend is the tipping point. I have a commitment in a city that’s a two and half hour drive from me on Saturday and then have to fly out from my city at 5:00 AM on Sunday (the next day). Then, I will be traveling back home on Monday to a very hectic week both personally and professionally.

Unfortunately, there was no way for me to get around all of this. The events that are happening are all very important to me, so I am moving forward with everything, although I know that it is going to be tough in terms of time and energy.

Here’s what I did to plan for this hectic period and you can too when you find yourself in a similar situation:

  1. Plan ahead. I laid everything out. What needs to be done and who is impacted? I discussed it with those involved and found a way to make everything work in the schedule.
  2. Get ahead. I have been working diligently over the past few weeks to get as far ahead of everything as possible. Being organized is a large part of it.
  3. Find holes in the schedule to keep up. While I am doing all of this traveling and moving around, I have already found open slots in my schedule and am going to use that time appropriately. For example, I am going to doze off on the plane (sleep catch up), work at the airport (business demands), and maximize my time with those that I want to spend time with (why I am overscheduled in the first place).
  4. Develop a recovery plan on the other side. Part of all of this planning has to do with me also strategizing about what the week following the hectic period will look like. I have been diligently laying out how that will unfold as well. Planning is key to recovery.

Although, I think you can move through a period of overscheduling effectively as I’ve discussed above, my recommendation, in general, is to try to avoid it as much as you can. To prevent it from happening too frequently in my life, I’ve gotten comfortable with saying no, started paying more attention to my priorities, and ensure that I take time out for the things that keep me healthy (fitness, fun, sleep and proper nutrition). Overscheduling happens quickly, so we’ve got to do our best to prevent it, and deal with it strategically when it occurs.