How to Manage Any Overwhelming, Large Project

manage a large project


Undertaking a large project can be overwhelming and intimidating. That large project could be a wedding, volunteering with an association, starting a business, or completing a major work assignment.  The size and complexity of the task can paralyze your thinking and prevent you from getting started. Here are some effective strategies to help you manage any overwhelming, large project.


Start with a Clear Plan

The first step in managing any large project is to create a clear and detailed plan with deadlines. Break the project down into smaller, more manageable tasks, and create a timeline for completing each one. Make your timeline visual to help you see the steps along the way to manage anxiety and perfectionism. Work backward from the original deadline to ensure completion ahead of time. This will help you stay organized and focused as you work towards your goal. Use project management tools like Trello, Asana, or a Gantt chart to help you keep track of tasks and deadlines.

Assess obstacles

No project goes along without a glitch. Assessing these challenges early in the project will help you be aware of situations that will arise. Be prepared for needing additional resources to complete the project. The obstacles also include competing projects, changing timelines, and unclear outcomes.

Prioritize Tasks

Not all tasks are equal in the amount of time required, the resources needed, or the placement in the timeline. Prioritize your tasks based on their importance and deadlines. Focus on completing high-priority tasks first, and then move on to less critical ones. This will help you make steady progress and avoid feeling overwhelmed. Early on in a project you have the most energy, enthusiasm, and resources to use. Be sure you are front-loading the most important tasks so make significant progress early in the project.


Break it Down

Breaking the project down into smaller, more manageable tasks is crucial. This makes the project seem less overwhelming and allows you to focus on one task at a time. Divide the project into smaller milestones, and celebrate your achievements as you reach each one. This will help keep you motivated and on track. Use your tracking tool


Use Time Management Techniques

Effective time management is essential when managing a large project. Distraction and complexity come into play in any project. Use techniques like the Pomodoro Technique and time blocking to help you stay focused and productive. Set aside specific blocks of time to work on your project, and eliminate distractions during these times. Regularly monitor your progress. You can identify issues with time management by assessing how long parts of the project are taking and re-evaluating your original plan. You can adjust and adapt accordingly when monitoring regularly.


Collaborate and Delegate Responsibilities

You may have been assigned this project solely, but don’t go it alone. Bring in team members as needed to learn new skills, build energy, and move forward. Delegate tasks to team members or enlist the help of friends and family members if possible. Working as a team not only lightens your workload but also allows you to benefit from the skills and expertise of others. Routinely over-communicate, review resources, and bring together any loose pieces as you work together on the project.


Celebrate Successes

Celebrate the milestones along the way. Each step is an important step so acknowledge this. Treat yourself to a moment of gratulations, a small reward, or a celebration with your team to mark each step as well as the completion of the project. Assess what went well, and what could be improved on to learn best about project management.



It’s Leap Day! How will you spend your extra 24 hours?

It's leap day



Every four years, we are gifted an extra day—a day that magically appears on our calendars. Known as Leap Day, this is the extra 24 hours we have always wished for and presents a special opportunity to seize the day and make the most of our time. Since Leap Day falls on a Thursday, it would be as easy to use this day as any other Thursday. Take today to step away from everyday thinking and make it a different kind of Thursday.



One way to make Leap Day remarkable is to take this opportunity to dream big and plan long-term goals to set into motion throughout leap year. Whether it’s starting a new project, embarking on a spontaneous adventure, or trying out a new hobby, be imaginative and go just a little out of your comfort zone. This is a rare opportunity to step outside of our comfort zones and dare to dream bigger than ever before. Instead of simply going through the motions of daily routines, use this extra day to envision the kind of life you truly desire.


In today’s fast-paced world, we’re constantly bombarded with distractions that take us out of the present moment. Leap Day presents the perfect opportunity to unplug from technology, disconnect from the noise of everyday life, and reconnect with yourself and the world around you. Turn off your phone, step away from your computer, and take some time to be fully present and engaged in the here and now. If not all the whole day, try this after hours and into the evening.


Leap Day is also a wonderful opportunity to connect with others and strengthen your relationships. Reach out to friends or family members by text or phone, schedule a coffee date with a colleague, or organize a future get-together.  Take advantage of this extra day to cultivate meaningful connections with those around you. Engage in deep conversations, listen attentively to others, and show genuine interest in their lives. Whether it’s sharing your dreams and aspirations or offering a listening ear to someone in need, make the most of this opportunity to foster authentic connections and create bonds that transcend time.

Ramp up the “Extra”

Finally, embrace the theme of “extra” to propel our Leap Day experience to new heights. Take an extra-long walk in nature, indulge in some extra self-care, or dedicate extra time to a project you’ve been working on throughout February. Treat yourself to some well-deserved self-care by taking time for activities that nourish your whole self. Set aside extra time for a relaxing bath, practice mindfulness meditation, or pamper yourself with a healthy dinner at home. Prioritize activities that help you unwind, recharge, and replenish your energy levels to feel refreshed and rejuvenated.  Embrace the theme of “extra” in everything you do, and approach the day with a sense of excitement, enthusiasm, and adventure. After all, Leap Day only comes around once every four years, so let’s make it count!


As we embark on this once-in-four-year adventure, let’s embrace Leap Day as a gift to yourself. Whether you choose to plan something exciting, unplug and reconnect, or simply add a little extra sparkle to your day, seize this opportunity to break away from the ordinary and make Leap Day a day to remember and use time throughout the day with intention.



Baby Steps to Add Structure to Your Work Week

Baby steps to add structure to your work week


Do you remember the structure of the school day?  There were time blocks for each subject and time for lunch and play.  As adults it can be difficult to find a pattern like this that fits for our work week. By starting small, you can create a productive structure throughout your week that makes life smoother. Here are 3 baby steps to add structure to your work week.


Theme Days

Assigning lengthy time blocks to specific topics makes it easier to be productive. A Theme Day assigns a set of certain tasks revolving around a specific area of work to a certain day. This could be Money Monday or Financial Friday. I have added Set up Sunday to my week to be sure I am ready to start the next week ready, organized, and prepared.  This strategy gives you ample time to complete the tasks, keeps you focused, and give you structure to your week.


Book end your day

Self-care happens best when scheduled. Take advantage of classes that occur twice a week to create structure. Attend the same classes for two days a week. For me, that is attending my Tuesday – Thursday 6 pm pilates class. This way I know that I have covered my exercise goals and ended each day with ample time for rest. By book ends, meaning the structuring the beginning or end of the day, I have followed Parkinson’s Law of work expands to fit the time allotted.


Incorporate routines

Routines are consistent patterns of activity that reinforce productivity and well-being. Having both start of the day and end the day routines helps create a daily structure for your week.

Start your day with a prioritized list of tasks each day. If you need a warm up to get started, organize the materials that are needed for each task then jump in.


End the day by closing down your station. Make a note of where you ended on your work. Re-prioritize your list for the next day. Place materials and resources back, clear your space, and push in your chair.

You will be relieved at the end of the day and excited at the start of the day with these new rituals that add structure to your week.


Empower horizontal time blocks

As you review your daily time blocks, add one horizontal time block at your most productive time slot. This power period at the same time each day throughout the week gives you time to do your most challenging and valuable work at your best time each day. Set this time block for projects that require deep thought. As a result your productivity will soar from dedicating this structure to your week.


Organizing your day with structure gives you a natural rhythm which offers powerful work flow. Add one of these baby steps to structure to your week this week.


7 Ways to Boost Summer Productivity


Summer has many positive “distractions” like vacations, kids in and out of camp, and one national holiday every month. It may not seem like this is the most productive time of the year. There are ways to maximize your summer productivity by taking advantage of these opportunities.


Prioritize projects and tasks

Natural breaks in the summer give you natural time blocks for deadlines. Use the breaks as the beginning and end of projects. Know what must be completed before a vacation and use your project management tools for calendaring these dates.


Tackle administrative tasks

Make a list of all the administrative tasks that you have not been able to check off this year. With a short window of time to execute, time block tasks that can be finished within a week’s time.


Learn new skills

Use the opportunity for quick deadlines to learn a new skill and complete professional development requirements. Listen and learn by video, audio, or webinar. Always wanted to knit or learn a new sport? Vary your learning with both professional and recreational study.


Plan ahead

Plan and schedule for the upcoming quarters. When you are back from one break, use that creative energy to think big about life and work. Assess goals, deadlines, and responsibilities. Review your strategies, plan your next steps, and add in accountability. Take this opportunity to reflect on what you might change with the changing current times.


Prioritize self-care

Take advantage of the summer extended daylight for exercise and meditation. Wake up to daylight and use this time for journaling or a walk. Exercise has many benefits for wellness. Try a new sport you want to try like pickleball. Choose relaxing self-care with a nap, reading, listening to music, or sitting by the water.


Clear clutter

Set up for success with a digital or physical decluttering session. Knowing that you have a time frame before the next holiday, use a daily time block to organize paper and digital files, and then create a system to efficiently manage these. Clearing clutter reduces frustration and overwhelm and creates clarity for your work.



Connections are our most important resource for support and well-being. Reach out to friends, family, colleagues, and clients to engage before or after work. Use holidays as connection points to meet up. Connect with a simple text of “I am thinking of you and hope you are having a great summer.” No matter how small, an act of kindness makes a big difference for others. Use this summer to connect through kindness with small thoughtful gestures for others.


Productivity is when you use your time best for the projects you have. Use this Summer to relax and recharge as well as move projects forward. Enjoy your breaks as natural ways to boost your energy and productivity.

ADHD Productivity Strategies For Getting Stuff Done


Ask people with ADHD how to get stuff done and you will be excited to learn that there are many ways to be productive. These can be less traditional, more customized solutions to getting started and implementing project management. Here are a few possibilities that work for my clients.


Strategies for getting started

  • Incorporate your time for getting started into your work time block. Set a timer for 15 minutes to get started. In 15 minutes you can find the materials you need and transition to the tasks required. It is best to allocate longer time blocks for work to be able to incorporate getting started and move into deep thinking.
  • Body doubling is partnering with another person who is doing work in the same space but not necessarily on the same topic. You discuss what you want to accomplish, set a timer and get started working. You can find a body double in your office or on FocusMate.
  • Set a meeting with your team to begin a task or project. Before the end of the meeting, start the first step. Beginning during the meeting is a lot like starting homework during class time in school.
  • Match your energy to your project. Choose the right time to do the highest priority work. Use your time best with this strategy.
  • Create a buffer time. Lower your stress with extra time. Allocate transition time in your schedule to transition. Schedule three times the amount of time blocks to complete a project. A buffer day is helpful for wrapping up loose ends.


Strategies for a task list

  • Use a new surface for writing reminders, like a bathroom mirror or dry-erase board.  This unique list keeps your list actionable and easy to see.
  • No matter whether it is digital or paper, breaking your tasks into micro-steps makes it easier to get stuff done. That is when you take any task or project and write it out step by step. If it is a task or project that is repeated regularly, make a template to follow each time.
  • Work in intervals to maximize your productivity on a task. Think of the Pomodoro Method with intervals of work and reset. You work for a duration you set (typical 45 minutes) and then reset (typically for 15 minutes). If you exercise, you are already skilled at this method from interval work like HIIT or running.
  • Externalize your getting started with apps. Automation helps you start a task with knowing what is next. Give yourself a heads up by assigning a date and time block for that task. This removes make a decision.  A project management app also integrates the materials you need with built-in organization.


Struggling? Try one of these strategies. Once you implement, track your progress and see how your productivity increases.

Make the Most of Every Day for those with ADHD


make the most of your day adhd


Organizing and productivity tips are everywhere online, on our devices, and in articles.  Having a productive, meaningful and balanced day can be difficult to accomplish. Choosing strategies and executing actions can be frustrating because of interruptions. Here are ways you can break through to feel accomplished at the end of the day.


Move from overwhelmed to in charge

  • It is easy to over plan and be overly optimistic about what can be accomplished in a day. Overplanning by packing every time block can be a cycle with no rewards. Start your planning with time blocks and allow for overflow options and time for last-minute changes. Overflow options include an end-of-day wrap-up section or designating Friday as a catch-up day.
  • Plan self-care every day. That time gives you the energy to be your most productive the rest of the day. That might be setting a boundary on starting and ending your day. A lunchtime walk or lunch with a friend can energize you.
  • Align your plan with your colleagues and boss through collaboration. When priorities are not aligned, or when others plan poorly, you have more interruptions to your day. A weekly project meeting and collaboration tools help you stay in charge of your day.
  • Know that your task list relates to the big picture and the meaning of your work. Reframing and destressing your task list, connecting to the reason behind each step, helps you feel like a contributor instead of a worker bee.


Use your calendar as your road map

  • Set up time blocks that work best for you. A time block can be 90 minutes or longer depending on how long you allocate and how you work best.
  • Keep your calendar where you can see it to be your guide daily. Set up a hybrid system with your calendar and your devices if an auditory reminder will keep you on track. Check your calendar routinely throughout the day to know what is next and what is planned for tomorrow.
  • Use transition time wisely. You may decide that you want fewer transitions in your day and assign themes to the day. That is when you assign specific related tasks to a specific day.
  • Meetings can be a valuable time to collaborate with productive strategies. Include time blocks to prepare, capture and complete tasks from meetings. Transition between meetings with a prep time to be prepared to contribute. Takes notes and add information to your collaboration tools during your meeting. End the meeting with a wrap-up of actions and assignments.


Minimize distractions that take time away from being productive

  • Be aware of your devices and the impact they have. Use airplane mode for your devices during time blocks. A five-minute scroll can turn into extended time away from work.
  • Be intentional about your use of social media. Determine when and how you will be online during the day.
  • Internet blockers help you stay on track. RescueTime assesses how much time you are being productive and on task.
  • For internal distractions, think about online body double help. For a virtual focused time, join Focusmate for virtual coworking.
  • Keep a specific task list, prioritized in the morning or night before, on your desk to remind you of your priorities for the day.


Get more done in less time

  • We all have a chronotype, where we are at our peak productivity time. Get more done by matching your best work time to the task requirements.
  • Batching your work helps you ramp up your productivity. Group similar activities together, such as bill paying, phone calls, email responses, or errands, to be more efficient.
  • Single task to get more done. Focus on one thing at a time to completion.
  • Use checklists to know all the steps in a process. This removes decision-making, giving you more time and taking less energy to complete a task or project.
  • Add routines to your week. Routines can be for both home and work, giving you the time pre-set and automated to get stuff done. Routines keep us happy and healthy.


Use lists wisely

  • Post-it notes, notebooks, and other writing devices are great to capture thoughts. Take this to the next step by consolidating your list on paper or in an easy-to-use app. The magic of a brain dump is that it clears your mind. The magic of consolidating is that you have a spot for all the tasks in one place.
  • Process and prioritize your list each day. You can be very optimistic about what you can accomplish. Specify the three Most Important Tasks (MITs) each day. Add three bonus MITs just in case you can accomplish more. Focus on these to feel accomplished at the end of the day. Make your MITs visual with a list on your desk.
  • Hold your own Weekly Planning meeting each with your list and your planner. Slot in tasks into time blocks that work with your energy and the task requirements.


There are many steps to have a productive day. Take away one of these strategies and work toward integration into your day.

How to Prioritize When Everything Feels Important


You have a lengthy list and  you want to be as productive as you can be. You have several projects to work on and you want to include self-care in your day. Everything seems equally important to do. What do you do to prioritize your list?


Align your goals with your tasks

Knowing your goal is the first step to prioritizing.  Take a few minutes to process what your goals are. Write these where you can see these every day to keep these in mind.  You will have both personal and professional goals so seeing and acknowledging all of these helps you prioritize.

If you have more than 5 goals, it may be time to refine your goals or consolidate your goals into categories.  The categories would also include single or multiple tasks or projects in that area. Improving  your health  might be a goal, and the action is to take a daily walk of 10k steps or run a half marathon.

You can simplify your tasks with one or two per goal. Working in micro-steps to a goal is one of the most successful methods. An example of this might be to market your business with 3 posts per week on social media, rather than posting on multiple sites many times a week.


Capture and categorize your tasks

You want to know all the actions before you start prioritizing. Capturing all the tasks is when  you write down all the actions you are planning or thinking of doing. It could be post it notes around your computer screen, a yellow pad with a long list, or a list in Click Up or Notion. Capturing tasks may be the point where you are overwhelmed and feel that you need to prioritize. It is an important step because you want to have all the possibilities.

After you create your lists, you can again categorize your tasks by topic. See the tasks by category helps you sequence, delegate and possibly delete actions. You can add categories like parking lot, pause, or waiting for pending tasks.

It is distracting when there are more tasks assigned to you with colleagues and your boss. Use a collaborative tool to capture all your team tasks and know what is assigned to you. Work productively with dates for deliverables.


Use dates to prioritize

A date is the most productive prioritizer. Agree on when your task is due, then add time to work on that task in a time block. Set aside time after a meeting to capture the dates and add work time in your planner. Once you know the amount of time required, you can set a date on your own as a way to prioritize.

During your Weekly Planning Time, review what is due this week. Extend the view during that time to look out a week or two as a heads up to prioritize and assess. Use time blocking to decide ahead of time and schedule work sessions that remove prioritizing at the last minute.


Establish routines for necessary tasks

Long term priorities often get little attention as due dates seem far off. Administrative and financial priorities need a routine schedule to give ample priority to the foundations of your life and work. A set routine for those tasks that are required but not date driven make it easy to accomplish these. You can set Friday afternoon for tasks like admin time, financial reviews or completing expense reports when less energy is available. Personal bill pay and financial reviews can be done on the 2nd and 4th Thursday evening or once a month on a Sunday.

Process and prioritize with your team

It may be unclear the next steps for a project. Your priorities should align with your team priorities. Host a clarifying discussion to be sure you are all aligned, what the next steps are and when the project will conclude. In processing this information, you can be best prepared to prioritize on  your own as well.


Choose a tracking tool that automates prioritizing

There are many tools to use that can help you prioritize. A Gantt chart can help you sequence priorities. Asana, Trello and Basecamp keep your tasks consolidated and your project on tracK. There are no perfect tools so choose what is easy for you to use and a tool you can use consistently.


No matter how you choose to prioritize, there may be a day that you don’t feel organized enough to prioritize. Take a step back, look at the big picture, and choose a strategy to help you know what to do then. Once you have prioritized, write your tasks where you can see them all day and all week.

How to Improve Motivation with Executive Function Challenges

how to improve motivation with executive function challenges


Finding the motivation to start and finish a task can be difficult for all of us. Executive function involves processes that are essential for behavior regulation and impulsivity, time management and planning, and problem-solving and decision-making. Where there are Executive Function challenges for initiating, planning, organizing, prioritizing, and sustaining attention, motivation is a bigger factor. There are many reasons why getting started on tasks is difficult. Focusing on specific strategies helps improve motivation.


Difficulty initiating or getting started

When tasks pile up, getting started can feel overwhelming.

  • Break your tasks into baby steps or chunks. Work on starting just one of these chunks.
  • Remember that done is perfect. Perfectionism is often paralyzing. Know what the end of your project should look like to complete it.
  • Create an initiation “warm-up” strategy. That is a way to ramp up to get started. This can be getting on headphones for quiet work, moving to a new space with a clear desk, or gathering all your materials together.


Lack of motivation leads to poor planning and time management

You think a task will take five minutes, but overall it takes two hours. Lack of time awareness can deter motivation.

  • Use visual tools to create a workflow for any task or project. A dry-erase or paper calendar helps you plan out the steps.
  • Assign tasks to time blocks. This assignment indicates what needs to be accomplished and when to do that.
  • Plan with the end in mind. Start backward and assign times for completion.
  • Use an overflow day to catch up and finish a task or project. That day is open just to have extra time available.


Disorganization of materials and due dates

Projects need organization in order to proceed. If you have trouble organizing the materials, it is difficult to start.

  • Set a time daily to capture information in your planner. Use the end of the day to review email, text, or other communication to add dates to calendars.
  • Organize your materials in a way that you feel is easiest to access. For some, that means printing and placing it in a notebook or keeping digital files. Use consistent naming to keep your system easy to use.
  • Maintain your system by including time to get your materials updated and put away at the end of the project.


Clear priorities help motivation

When everything seems important is the time to establish clear priorities.

  • Make a list of your top 3- 5 priorities. Be sure that your tasks match up with these priorities. This will help you define how many projects are not on this list and may need to be eliminated.
  • Use a daily focus list to keep your daily priorities clear and easy to see.
  • Often there are two competing priorities simultaneously. You want to finish up your work for the day and have dinner at 6 pm. Giving yourself a boundary or rules to follow help you stay on track rather than decide at the moment.
  • Make a list of what you can delegate to help you do your best work.


Keep on keeping on with sustained attention

There is hyperfocus and not enough focus.

  • Limit distractions by silencing devices and blocking pop-ups. Use an internet blocker to stay on track.
  • Use the Pomodoro method of alternating work and break times to maximize attention.
  • Body doubling can help you stay tethered to your tasks. Invite another person to work in your space while you work on your project.
  • When your attention wanes, look for positive ways to gain traction with productivity. Take a walk, get some water, and re-assess your next steps.


Knowing your WHY can be the most important factor in motivation. If you feel your work is compelling or interesting, it is much easier to get started. Take a look at your assignment and see if you can make it more interesting by approaching it with curiosity.



How to Stop Procrastinating for Those who Procrastinate Most


how to stop procrastinating


Just the mention of taxes, completing an expense report, or scheduling appointments can make you delay and procrastinate. Avoidance is common for all of us, most especially those with ADHD. There are many reasons behind procrastinating and many strategies that help you remove barriers to getting started.

Chunk it down and create micro-steps

One of the most common reasons we procrastinate is because we are overwhelmed. Create micro-steps in a task or project just to get started. You will find that once you successfully complete one micro-step, you have the confidence and skill to move forward. This is certainly true of taxes!


Make a plan and block your time

Time blocking has become a well-known strategy for productivity. Those especially hard tasks and projects you are avoiding are best suited to high-energy time blocks. Having a routine of doing hard stuff at a consistent time makes it easier to accomplish. Be true to your plan with commitment. Remember, your time blocks can be as small as you like, that being five to fifteen minutes.


Name your emotions

Yes, let’s say what it is that is behind that delay. Powerful emotions like fear, anxiety, or sadness can prevent you from starting a task. Work to identify and manage the emotion you are dealing with through self-awareness and the help of a therapist or coach. Naming your emotions also helps you find a way to a more positive emotion and the results you want to achieve.


Create the right environment

According to James Clear, environmental design makes a significant impact. You can surround yourself with the right cues to start your efforts. Design your workspace with what cues you to work without distractions. In combination with collaboration and delegation, your task can be managed with and by others. Bringing in additional help energizes you.


Set yourself up for success

When faced with any task or project, the better rested we are the better we feel and perform. Set up for success with a great night’s rest.


Spend time processing what is holding you back. Once you know more about your obstacles, choose a path and create a plan that helps you move forward.




Mastering Your Calendar and To-Do List


Organizing your schedule and life doesn’t have to be complicated. With a trusted tool, you can take back control of your life and have more time for the things you enjoy!

For years I have worked with clients on mastering their calendars and to-do lists! I wanted to share with you a new product created by me to help you make time for what’s important to you.

  • This combination of monthly and weekly planners and to-do lists gives you the opportunity to craft your own calendar system that works best for you. You’ll also receive a checklist for getting started with the options to craft your own system.
  • Using the printable weekly and monthly undated pages, perpetual pages, and uncategorized pages for task lists, you’ll be empowered to process your schedule and integrate your goals and tasks.
  • Sample schedules and task lists are included to help you manage your own calendar and tasks.
  • Craft your calendar to work for you!

You can see your plan, get it organized, be productive, and have time for self-care. Check this out here on Etsy!