There are some simple ways to calm your world and be more productive, no matter how many demands there are on your time and your emotions.
1. Breathe. Take a deep breath. (I'll teach you how to do that in another blog, but for now, do your best.) A good breath (or four) helps us slow down physically and mentally. Get ready to focus.
2. Prioritize. Identify all the "things" you have calling for your attention. Then, slowly, mentally or in a written list, prioritize them. Focus your attention on only the first on your list, aware that the others will be addressed when this one is accomplished. Whenever you begin to think of something else on your list, tell yourself (out-loud helps) that it will wait for you, tell it to stop interrupting you. It's rude to interrupt.
When you try to spin all those plates at once, panic sets in, tension builds, and you're probably not a very nice person to talk to. Take off the plates, lay down the sticks, place all of them safely on the stage, and turn your attention to only one. You will finish that task more efficiently and much quicker because your whole attention is on only that one.
3. Move. Make sure you take a few minutes to get your blood pumping through physical exertion: a walk or run, some stretching or calisthenics. Any form of exercise relieves a lot of mental and emotional tension. While you exercise, think of the exercise itself. Imagine the blood providing fresh oxygen to your muscles and your brain, making you stronger, smarter, and more relaxed.
Each of these steps involves "mindfulness," focusing on the activity at hand. (More about that in a later blog, as well.)
Three quick, rudimentary steps taken right now can make your day more productive and more relaxed.