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Welcome it in, then let it go, like a visitor with a message.
Noting it can stay longer than it needs to. I feel it, and when I do, I know what I need to do.
What does overwhelm feel like?
You feel your life is out of control. Your mind won’t shut down, as it thinks there is too much to do.
It’s constantly trying to decide what task to perform next. It’s looking into the future and predicting your failure.
It’s flooding your body and mind with waves of that overwhelmed feeling.
Here are five easy steps to tackle overwhelm:
1. Get Organised.
List all the items that require action and note when the action is required by. Get all the whizzing thoughts out your head onto paper. Now group the items, prioritise them, and note what your next action step will be.
Is there any action you can take right this minute? Can you outsource any of the items? Who can help? Do any items need to be popped onto another list called “I see you, but I don’t need to worry about you right now?” How much lighter do you feel?
2. Take a Well-Deserved Break.
Life can get busy sometimes. We are trying to wear multiple hats, and it can all feel out of control. You may feel you are failing to do anything well—constantly spinning the plates, holding your breath as you are waiting for it all to crash around you.
Each day, build in pause points where you take a five-minute breather, a 15-minute check-in on your to-do list, or a 30-minute reset where you run, meditate, yoga flow, or journal.
Then each week and each month, carve out a longer break. Perhaps an hour just for you. Or grant yourself permission to take an entire afternoon, evening, or day for you.
Life doesn’t need to be a sprint; build in a restful practice.
You’ll come back so much more energised!
3. Learn to Say No.
If you’re always saying yes to everyone else, then you are saying no to you. You might feel overwhelmed when your to-do list is not aligned to your purpose and future. Choose to do things that are serving you better. That way you feel inspired to take action rather than feel like a slave to someone else’s plan.
4. Ask for Help.
Asking for help isn’t a failure; it is tactical. Play to your strengths. Look at your to-do list and identify where you need help. You may not enjoy it, so outsource it. There may be some items that you don’t know what to do with, but others can help you. Life can be easier when we let others help us.
Each day check in on you. We are the product of our environment and routines. How is your sleep? How is your eating? Are you drinking enough water? Are you able to schedule in a regular nature break? Have you enjoyed a mindful activity recently?
Be more mindful and slow down.
Unfortunately, overwhelm is a regular feeling that won’t just go away, so form an overwhelm awareness and action tool kit.
By pausing and slowing down our minds, we become more focused and we’ll feel less overwhelmed instantly.
Pause to propel.