Eliz Greene

Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t worry you are not alone.  Many of us struggle with what I describe as The Curse Of Capability. 

Are you suffering with the curse?

  • Do people often rely on your ability to get things done?
  • Do you have the uncanny knack for pulling things off, even in tight time frames?
  • Do you constantly worry something will slip through the cracks?
  • Do you often find yourself thinking about all of the things you didn’t get done, rather than enjoying those you completed?

These are sure signs!

When you are considered a capable person, you are asked to take on more, which is of course flattering.  The problem comes when we take on more and more – until we have committed to the point we are no longer capable and now need to struggle to keep up. The stress of that struggle to keep up is a key component to Juggling Stress: A Busy Woman’s Guide to Sanity and Health.  During that program audiences work to determine the three most important things in life.  Focusing on just three priorities provides some boundaries for taking on new commitments.

In the event you think I’ve got this all figured out, and do it perfectly every day… I don’t.

After fulfilling a three-year commitment to our local school board, I find myself inundated with new opportunities.  Some big. Some small. Some flattering and attractive.  Some that make me want to run away.  Right now I know I’m vulnerable – and it is essential that I choose very carefully.

School board required an enormous amount of my time and energy.  Now I find myself a bit unfocused without the constant race-t0-the-finish feeling.  I have said yes to some small things, taking the table cloths home from church, washing, and returning them.  It was a small job, and it was greatly appreciated.  Standing in the church kitchen I found myself looking for something MORE to do.  Why wasn’t I happy to do a job that was needed and leave it alone? Perhaps because I need to feel needed?

My focus needs to remain on my top three: My family, my business, and my health.

Being successful with those three things depends upon my ability to protect them – by not filling up my life to the point of struggle.

No. I will not submit to the Curse of Capability!

How are you fighting against the Curse? Please share in a comment below.


About Eliz Greene

Eliz Greene survived a heart attack at age 35 while seven months pregnant with twins. Her down-to-earth strategies to manage stress and improve heart health and reduce stress are used by thousands of busy people all over the world. She is a motivational wellness speaker, author, and job stress researcher. Visit elizgreene.com to book Eliz for your next event.

6 Responses to “The Curse Of Capability”

  • Great post — and very important! I can really relate to this problem. One thing I use when it comes to trying to decide which of the many opportunities come my way I should accept, is to ask myself three questions: (1) Is this something really easy to do? (2) Would I enjoy doing it? and (3) Is it something that needs my special skills — (vs. something that anybody could do.) If two out of three responses are “yes,” I’m much more liked to accept.

  • Wonderful post at a critical time for me. Am trying to learn to say “NO”. not an easy thing for me. I agree with your 3 important things–family, job and health. We all need to prioritize and keep our stress levels down. Easier said than done!! Thanks for your insightful words, Eliz.

  • great post Eliz!
    Here in America there seems to be this constant need to “strive for more”. Being clear on what we want “more” of is imperative. More quiet time in nature.. or perhaps just in a puddle of sunshine. To feel centered and grounded within the chaos is a goal as well. Sometimes we forget just how important these can be (and perhaps, should be).
    Having the guts to say “no” is a skill that has to be practiced. It’s one I’m not very good at, but continue to work at.
    thanks for your words of wisdom.

    • Thanks Laura! You are so right on being clear of what we DO want – often we focus on what we DON’T want. I look forward to more puddles of sunshine!!!

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