February 7, 2021

Feeling Overwhelmed? Stop What You’re Doing & Read This.

Overwhelmed? Remember you’re a busy body.

Feeling overwhelmed sucks.

It’s the experience of feeling like we’re drowning under our thoughts or emotions. It can happen to anyone, in any circumstance.

We could be doing something extremely meaningful and productive but feel buried under the mountain of work that’s left. Or be lying in bed, motionless, and feel weighed down by how much we’ve procrastinated. It’s a bodily experience triggered off by thoughts. A lot of shallow breathing and consternation.

I’ve found it helpful to turn my focus inward in those instances. If I don’t know how to move forward, or even to the next moment, what I can do is be in this one. I follow a five and five method—five deep breaths—while focusing on five things my body is autonomously doing for me at that moment.

It’s an immediate and active way to tune in without needing to “do something.”

Here’s how it goes:

“It’s too much. I can’t get it all done. I will never get it all done.”


*Deep breath in*

>> You’re not a puddle of muscle mass right now because your body is fighting against Earth’s gravitational pull.

*Breathe out slowly*


*Deep breath in*

>> Your heart might be hurting right now, but it’s also beating about 66 to 72 times per minute.

*Breathe out slowly*


*Deep breath in*

>> You can feel the cool air going through your nose and reaching your lungs. You take about 12 to 20 of those per minute.

*Breathe out slowly*


*Deep breath in*

>> Your kidneys are taking the trash out right now by cleaning 1.2 litres of blood every 60 seconds. Who needs a detox?

*Breathe out slowly*


*Deep breath in*

>> You’re electric, baby—your brain has about 200 billion neurons, and each one is sending 1,000 signals every second.

*Breathe out slowly*


It’s alright to feel overwhelmed. We’ve got a lot of balls in the air, but there are a number of magnificent things happening that we aren’t even aware of at that moment. By the end of this exercise, I tend to feel more appreciative of my body—and calmer—thanks to the deep breathing technique.

The human body is a fascinating and intricately designed machine that we all have a tendency to undervalue—mostly because it’s been doing its job right and isn’t excessively demanding.

On the days it feels like we have too much on our plate, it can be helpful to remember that there are a few vital and necessary tasks that won’t need our attention. Just like us, our body is busy and working hard at hand. It just does it more quietly and in the background.

Even if we feel like we can’t get it all done, we can be relieved to know our busy body is knocking things off the checklist.



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