One month ago my daughter, Melanie, became a Mrs. when she married Jack, the love of her life.

As my only daughter, I was thrilled to take on the role of wedding planner to bring her wedding vision to life. If you’ve never planned a wedding before, it feels like a massive undertaking with all the many details that need to be handled. We found their dream venue, the UMass Club up on the 32nd floor of One Beacon Street and were thrilled that it was available on May 20, 2023. This gave us a little over 10 months to pull it all together. Other than the weather (it was the ONLY rainy Saturday in May in the city of Boston this year!), everything went as planned and it truly was a magical evening.

Planning a wedding while running my full-time virtual assistant business, there were many times where I felt completely overwhelmed. So many details starting with securing all the vendors, deciding on the décor/theme and then implementing that plan on a tight timeline. Everything from flowers, table centerpieces, save the dates, invitations, wedding favors, food selections (that was really fun!), RSVPs, wedding day timeline… the list goes on and on!

Now that I have been relieved of my “wedding planner” duties and have settled back into my normal routine, it got me thinking about how small business owners can often feel overwhelmed in the day-to-day of their business.

Here are four tips that helped me successfully navigate and find balance when I’m feeling overwhelmed:

Set up Systems
Whether you want to go high-tech or simply use a paper notebook, find a system to keep your ideas and to-do lists organized. My daughter and I used a Trello Board to keep track of all the many wedding details. Using an online platform allowed both of us to have access to the board 24/7, which is where we posted our different thoughts and ideas for the many decisions we had to make. If it needed to be planned or ordered, it went on the Trello board, along with the deadline dates. Getting all that information out of your head and onto paper or into a digital system is a great first step!

Take Things Off Your Plate
About 3 months out from the wedding date when we were in the countdown crunch, it became necessary to temporarily take a pause on non-essential business tasks. My monthly bookkeeping tasks and writing my newsletters were just a couple of the items I had to put on hold to really focus on the major tasks at hand. Anything that wasn’t critical to meeting day-to-day client delivery deadlines or wedding deadlines, simply had to take a back seat until the wedding was behind us and I had the mental space to pick them back up.

Tackle One Thing at a Time
It’s so easy to get caught up the many, many things that need your attention. What helped me during this time was to actually schedule them on my calendar. I then knew exactly which tasks were due or needed to be worked on in a particular day in order to meet multiple deadlines. There is something super satisfying to checking tasks off a daily to-do list … anyone agree??

Take a Walk
Whether it’s walking on my treadmill or walking outside around my neighborhood now that the weather is finally warming up, nothing relieves stress and clears my head better than taking a daily walk. (Bonus: it’s also great for your overall health!)

Do you have any tips for overcoming overwhelm? I’d love to hear from you!