One thing that we keep hearing is how overwhelmed many of you are regarding technology and what happens online. Overwhelm is not a good place to be. It comes from a state of anxiety and leaves you unable to function when experienced at its worst. Industries are being disrupted and jobs and people are starting to be replaced by technology. Throw into the mix the need to master marketing on social media and always being in ‘contact’ even for work thanks to our smartphones, and many of you are wondering where it will all end. And it’s not just older people who are feeling like this. Many millennials also feel the same way.

Technology is never going to stand still. It never has and it never will. Think the emergence of the car from the horse and cart, driverless cars from cars as we have known them, the emergence of the mobile phone and then the smartphone, and newspapers to the Internet. You just need to read about Elon Musk’s vision for the future to imagine what will be coming. But, the changes need to be approached with interest and enthusiasm not dread and overwhelm.
Here are a few tips on what you need to do to manage this state of overwhelm and keep things in perspective.

  • Prioritise – Keep your focus on the big picture and strive to be the very best – better than any of your competitors. Uber has disrupted the taxi industry but there are still taxis everywhere and it has forced the taxi industry to lift its game. Not a bad thing. What can you do to lift yours? The time is now to start playing smart.
  • Relax – Relax. Everything is not going to change in the next few minutes or weeks or months. Some new technologies and software will take years to become the norm, some will never be embraced, and some will become popular quickly. You should only be using technology that is going to save you time or money or will help you to stand out from the crowd. Remember your big picture. Ask yourself is it going to help you achieve that big picture?
  • Delete – It’s great to read about what’s happening and you must stay up to date with changes or you will die like the dinosaurs. However, there is a time and place and you have to realise that you can’t read everything. Delete some of those annoying newsletters that come into your inbox if they aren’t vital and delete some of the notifications on your phone if they aren’t assisting you.
  • Turn off your phone – turn your phone off at the end of the day or at least onto flight mode. If 5pm is too early, find a time that suits you so you get some down time. Try not to anxiously check it every 5 minutes or your social media feeds. This goes for at least some of the time that you have off as well. Try to have at least one enjoyable activity without screen time.
  • Try new products – If you hear about a new app or software and think it could give you an edge, then try it. Trying new products keeps you relevant but do it one at a time and don’t try to make lots of changes all at once. Eye on the big picture always and you don’t want to get into overwhelm!
  • Get organised – The more organised you are, the less chance you will have for overwhelm. Do your most important tasks first always. Prioritise the work that will give you the biggest results. The rest comes after. Organise your appointments so you have time for other important tasks. Space out your meetings so you have time to return calls or fit in the unexpected in between if necessary.

Most of us today have busy schedules, no doubt about it, but don’t fall into the habit of telling everyone how busy you are. It’s not an indication of how important you are, it just sounds like you don’t know how to manage your time. If you make your clients feel like you don’t have enough time for them they will certainly find someone else who does.

So take a deep breath and vow to keep the overwhelm where it belongs – in the trash! Instead, concentrate on being the very best in your particular industry that you can. Take some time to work out how you can improve and make a difference and start implementing those steps. Those at the top of their game will be the ones who outlast any disruptive technology. Go out of your way to connect, help and make a difference in your client’s lives. Stay up to date with what’s happening but concentrate on the big picture and you will soon realise that you will be one of the survivors who have learnt to overcome overwhelm in technology.

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Judith Shuttleworth is the owner of HotsWots, a boutique digital business aimed at shaping businesses online. Find out how we can help your business thrive and gain more customers. Call our team today!