If you’re like most of the population today, you’ve come to accept that living in overwhelm is just another part of life and yet…overwhelm leads to stress, lack of sleep, exhaustion, self sabotage and loss of self esteem. It’s true. Learning to manage overwhelm is a key step to becoming a Lionhearted Woman.
When did it become okay to live life stressed out and gasping for air in order to get it all done? When you’re life is run by overwhelm, you have zero opportunity to enjoy the simple things that surround you…take in the moments that fill you up…lean in and quiet your soul. In fact, your soul moves to the back of your priorities.
Why so much overwhelm in today’s world? When did all become so complicated and pressure-filled?
In addition to the usual suspects like careers, households to run and families to care for, the Internet has added a whole other layer of pressure. Do you ever compare yourself to all the stuff you read on your friends’ Facebook pages and think, “I’m not doing enough! What’s wrong with me?” Or do you look at Instagram and Pinterest and feel like a total creative failure? Of course you do…we all do!
Comparisonitis will stop you in your tracks and yet, I hear women all the time comparing themselves to other people’s social media. Feeling like you’re not enough (more on this subject in another post) is a perfect opportunity for overwhelm to set and with overwhelm comes doubt and fear. They make lovely bed fellows and they will also rob you of your sanity. In addition to doubt and fear, your inner control freak emerges. You jump into overdrive and you try and control everything and when you can’t, you feel like a failure.
I get it. I’ve lived it. I sometimes still struggle with it. I have days when I look at Facebook and I think…”What’s wrong with me?” I still find it interesting that my brain goes to this place. The difference is that now I have a process to quiet the doubt and fear and stop comparisonitis.
You’ve got to embrace and make peace with overwhelm. Here’s how:
1. Figure out what’s causing your overwhelm.
Sounds simple, but how often do you stop and figure out the cause? Are there too many things on your to-do list? Are priorities out of whack? Are you taking on too much? By the way…NO is an answer. It’s okay to say no for your self-preservation.
Stop. Get quiet. Move away from anything that makes you feel stressed or uncomfortable. Tune in to your soul and just listen. Where’s the overwhelm coming from? Once you know…decide what can be tackled in that moment and leave the rest of it out of your thought process. Seriously…you don’t have to do 100 things in a single day.
2. Give Yourself a Little Love.
Love yourself for all that you are and all that you do and all that you accomplish. Decide to tell your inner critic that she’s not really wanted right now. Just BE okay with giving yourself some good positive acceptance and feedback. Give extra love to the part of you that is living in doubt and fear. Stop beating yourself up. Take your time and step back so you can see things more clearly.
3. Create a Plan.
Having an organized plan for your day is key to managing overwhelm. I spent years living without a plan for my day…week or month and it didn’t work. In fact, it was a disaster. Not having a plan wreaked my havoc and created more overwhelm in my life. Today…my life is scheduled because I have to plan what I’m doing each and every day or I go right back to living in overwhelm. The farther out you can plan – the better. A written plan keeps you on track and makes your personal and business goals easier to gauge. You can also figure out what you can move around…what tasks must be done by a certain date and what you can let go of. All successful people have a plan.
4. Create Personal Boundaries
I’m going to offer a whole course on how to do this, because personal boundaries change everything and yet…I’ve never met anyone who was taught how to successfully set boundaries. What are your non-negotiables? What are you not willing to compromise? (This could be as simple as attending your weekly yoga class.) What are the things that really push your buttons and you feel it in your gut? Those are your boundary triggers. Figure out your triggers and you’ll know that you need to set a boundary. Where do you feel unappreciated or taken advantage of? Again…a boundary?People will treat you based upon the strength or weakness of your boundaries. Click To Tweet
5. Set Something Free
I don’t know what this is for you? It could be as simple as deciding that on Wednesday nights you’re not cooking dinner because you’re going to exercise class. It could be setting a negative person in your life free. Recently I had to do just that. I had a friend who was always making unkind comments about other types of people. (You know what I mean, right?) It upset me. It made me uncomfortable. In fact, I hated it and finally I had to end the friendship because I felt like this person’s attitude was sticking to me and I didn’t want that. So maybe it’s a person…or a job…or weight…or guilt…or anything that is weighing you down. Set something free to allow the good to flow in your direction and to release you from overwhelm.
What are you holding on to?
I want to hear how you manage overwhelm. What one thing can you do today that will help you make peace with this overwhelming world in which we live? Leave a comment below.
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