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Tips For When You Feel Overwhelmed

Posted Nov 06 2010 4:05pm
I'm not quite sure whether it is the time of year leading up to Christmas, the weather, general increasing life pressures or something else entirely, but lately, lots of people have been telling me or I have been reading online, that they feel really overwhelmed.  Clients, friends and fellow bloggers are openly expressing that they feel like they are in a whirlpool where they have so much to do, so little time and that the feelings associated with this are making them feel angry, sad and confused.  Sometimes all at the same time.

Whatever the reason, we all can certainly feel overwhelmed at different times in our lives.  When that feeling is prolonged it can lead to mental and physical health concerns that if left unchecked, can be very hard to come back from.  It really is a case of prevention being better than a cure, and I am a total believer that there are positive ways to deal with those times in our life when we feel really snowed under.

For the purposes of this post I want to share with you some of my best tips that you can do quickly or with little effort to address feeling overwhelmed.  I know that there are many more in depth ones that can be done as well but these are my mini-starts to helping you that with prolonged practise or being used as a catalyst to make other changes in your life, can really help.

If you are feeling overwhelmed, under pressure and very stressed right now give some of the following a go -

Ask for help.  Immediately.  You might not realise it but most people actually love to help others.  If you feel you are drowning a bit and struggling with daily things you need to do, reach out for support.

Breathe.  I know you are doing that right now, but I'm talking about really deep, focused breathing.  Step away from what you are doing for even just five minutes, step outside and take some deep breaths in and out to fill your lungs with oxygen and calm your central nervous system.  It will help you to be able to return to what you are doing with greater energy and ability.

Take a nap or just cart yourself off to bed or the couch for even thirty minutes.  You might think it a strange idea but shutting down your brain in this way even for just a short while will absolutely help you recharge.  Note: if you fall asleep almost immediately, that is a surefire sign you are over tired and need to consider how you might get some more sleep in general.
Prioritise.  Work out what is really important and when I say really important, I mean really important.  Does cleaning out the laundry cupboard or washing your house windows really have to be done today when you have so much going on?  Could it not wait if your day is crammed full?  What things are actually really, really important and do only those things.  Making a to do list can be very helpful with this too.
Get outdoors.  Sometimes when we are inside alot that feeling of four walls closing in on us can actually begin to feel like it really is happening.  Stepping out into the sunshine, or even the rain, where you are under a big open sky and can take in all around you really helps.
Exercise.  Go for a brisk walk, do yoga or dance up a storm to release some feel good endorphins and take your mind away from the pressure it is feeling.  Good for body and for mind.
Allow for some 'space' in your life to do absolutely nothing.  If you are scheduled to the hilt all the time that is a path to anxious and stressed feelings becoming very strung out and prolonged.  It is vital that we allow ourselves time in our lives where we simply have nothing on and can then choose to do whatever we what with that time - at that time.
Live in the present moment.  Thinking too much into the future and of all the things you need to do (or think you need to do) often creates feelings of worry.  All you have is this present moment and to live your life fully you must be in that moment and doing what you are doing with care and love.
I hope you find these helpful.  What helps you when you are feeling overwhelmed? 
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