Five Keys to Avoid Overwhelm
Before I share the five keys, I want to clarify the difference between overwhelm and burnout. Overwhelm is often an in-the-moment feeling and can be triggered by stress. It leaves us feeling as though we can’t handle everything going on around us.
However, unlike overwhelm, burn out happens when we haven’t been listening to the signals our body sends, we become exhausted and before long we’ve reached burnout.
This article focuses upon overwhelm, how to avoid it and how you can kiss overwhelm goodbye for good!
1. Just Say No!
Are you saying no enough? As someone who is most probably empowered, passionate and creative you have already learnt to say yes to lots of things. In most cases this is a positive practice. Saying yes pushes us out of our comfort zones. It opens amazing new doors of opportunity and growth. However, before you reach burn out check in with yourself and ask yourself; “am I saying yes to too many things?”
You can easily begin to feel overwhelmed when you can’t manage your obligations fully. Or perhaps you’ve taken on too many responsibilities. Now’s the time to take an objective step back and see if there are areas in your life that you could ‘trim back on’ to suit you better. Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask for help, as feeling burdened is one sure way to lead to overwhelm.
2. Start Your Day Right
When we start our day in the right frame of mind we feel more in control of our lives. Have you ever had a day you woke up late for something? Perhaps it left you feeling flustered and agitated and then you noticed how the rest of the day seemed to follow suit. Yes, we are human and those days can happen to us all. But when those days become more than a one off is when overwhelm will become a problem.
Begin your day in the most peaceful and productive way possible. The first thing I do is drink water with fresh lemon and yes, I do this before I check my phone, social media or emails! After waking we need to fuel our bodies. I also read a chapter from a book that inspires and motivates me. This offers me focus and intention for my own purpose that day.
Think about how you can start your day in the most positive and empowered way and come up with morning routines that nourish and nurture you. Maybe stretches, yoga or listening to an uplifting podcast. Having a morning ritual such as these, makes it very hard for overwhelm to find you and try to bring you down.
3. Don’t Hop Around
See if you recognise yourself in any of these statements.
• I structure my workdays
• I move methodically from one project to the next, with space between each
• I finish one task and then move immediately to another
• I have many tasks on the go at any one time
• I’m restless and constantly checking social media, emails etc., while planning my day
When we create a schedule we’re less likely to face overwhelm. If we give ourselves set time between each task to reboot and reset, we’ll feel less stressed and better able to cope with the demands of our job. Unlike ‘hopping’ around with no organised plan, which can easily lead to overwhelm.
4. Tidy Up Time!
I remember as a young child in school we had ‘tidy up time’. This was a set amount of time for the end of the day where we would get our coats, bags, lunchbox and pens packed and ready to be taken home. Now as an adult I still remind myself to participate in this tidy up time, in a new, structured and practical way.
So, how can you implement this same philosophy into your busy day? It’s simple, take time before your day has finished to catch up on any loose ends. After all, when you get home to spend time with those you love, they should have your undivided attention. But, that’s difficult to do if you’re thinking about that last email you should have sent, or the phone call you forgot to make.
By scheduling in 30 minutes before the end of each day, you’re giving yourself the opportunity to review, evaluate and complete those tasks that just can’t wait. You’re taking control of a much better work/life balance and creating harmony between the two.
5. Be the Captain of Your Own Attitude
Are you ready to be the captain of your attitudes and improve the way you approach life?
Overwhelm, simply put, is when we feel we have lost control of the moment that we are in. It can leave us feeling; flustered, confused and stressed. But, what if we approached every moment from a conscious place of confidence, high energy and trust?
When unforeseen circumstances arise are you going to be the person who yells out, ‘I don’t know what to do!’ or are you going to be the person who calmly says to yourself, ‘I don’t have a plan right this second, but I know all things can be figured out and resolved’.
The decision is yours. If you make a conscious choice in every moment to stand in your own personal power, you are the calm within the storm. Decide to be the voice of reason when everyone else is in chaos.
Leave Overwhelm Behind for Good
Implement these strategies and;
• learn what to say no to
• start your day right
• enjoy a better work/life balance
• prioritise tasks
• be in control your own thoughts and
• you will very rarely feel overwhelmed again
We cannot see what the future holds, or what awaits us. But, we can breathe deeply and make a promise to ourselves that we will learn to handle everything we’re faced with. Whatever we have on our plate we can deal with….one step at a time.