When we are overwhelmed, we are stressed and this state of being is becoming the new normal for many of us. Here are some reasons why we get overwhelmed and three valuable tips to overcome the overwhelm.
Too much to do and too little time.
Our schedules are jam packed with obligations from work, family, committees, clubs, food and fun. Part of this has to do with feeling of value. We have been programmed to believe that if we aren’t productive, we are not contributing and therefore we are idle, lazy, a good-for-nothing and worthless.
This could not be further from the truth. When we are constantly on the go, our brains are focused on all the things we need to do. The more pressure, the more we are stressed and the brain begins to get overloaded. The more overload, the poorer the brain functions. Our ability to generate creative ideas and solutions dissipates.
When our brain doesn’t get any rest, we are actually worth less to our employer, our families and to ourselves. In order to be creative, our minds need to rest. Frequent breaks, time off and vacations energize and refresh us to help us think more clearly and be more productive.
Overwhelm is a sign that you have not established boundaries.
This occurs when you can’t say no. Saying yes to everything that is asked of you fills up your calendar and robs you of valuable “me” time.
Saying yes to everything that is asked of you could be because you are looking for approval. You want everyone to love you. In its own way, this is fulfilling to you and makes you feel good about yourself. A deeper look into your soul may help you understand why you need the external praise and “feel goods” to begin with. What was missing in your formative years that you are making up for now?
Overcome the overwhelm by exploring and resolving these beliefs. This will automatically enable you to begin to say no and set aside time for the things that nourish your soul from the inside.
You feel like you are the only one that can do it.
If you are a bit of a perfectionist, you may feel that you have to do it a certain way, or it won’t get done right or to your satisfaction. You may as well do it yourself. This smacks of a controlling mindset and behavior and can lead to feelings of isolation and aloneness.
What is behind this behavior? Was there a time in your life that you didn’t do something and were blamed for the unsatisfactory job that someone else did? Do you feel that nobody else can do it as good as you?
Releasing the “I can do it all” hold can help you to share the load, delegate tasks and responsibilities. This ultimately frees you to have the much-needed down time and peace of mind, or start a new, creative project that is fulfilling.
Tips to help calm overwhelm:
1. Get control and make a plan.
You are feeling overwhelmed because you ultimately don’t feel like you are in control. If you are being pulled in multiple directions, and find yourself feeling scattered and only able to focus on one task for a short time before you are pulled to another, make a plan. Decide what you will do when and focus on each task until it is done to the level that is needed at the time. Creating a list that you can prioritize the importance of a task, and the time by which it needs to be done, can help you overcome the overwhelm.
2. Clear out some down time.
What can you either not do, or post pone that will give you some free time each day, week or month? List your obligations, including your “me” time and rate their importance on a scale of 0-10. Then decide what you can shift. It may require making some phone calls to sort it all out, but once it is done, you just might feel a sense of relief wash over you that seems foreign at first – but you’ll get used to it.
3. Address the root causes of the behavior.
As mentioned above, you may pack your schedule to overflowing for emotional reasons – the need to be recognized, praised, loved, appreciated. Or there may be the fear of repercussions if you assign the task to someone else and it is done badly, and you are blamed.
Exploring the times in your life that began those thought patterns, understanding what happened and why you default to those beliefs, will go a long way toward helping you overcome the overwhelm.
EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques or Tapping) is a powerful, fast, effective alternative therapy that quickly helps to uncover these experiences, and dispels the fears and anxieties around them. Once resolved, you are free to make decisions based more on what is right for you.
I offer a free, no obligation phone consultation where we can explore what you are experiencing, what you want to change and if we would be a good fit to work together. Please contact me and give yourself the gift of a solution.
Life Wellness Coach
Certified EFT and Matrix Reimprinting Coach
Hunt for Hope Wellness