The next blog post in my Nourish series is about feeling overwhelmed. Overwhelm can happen for many reasons, it may be a case of having too many things to do, too many people making demands on your time, challenging and tough situations, or emotional overwhelm to name a few. Learning to find your place of calm during times of overwhelm is an important aspect of self-care and nourishing yourself.
Here are some things to try when you’re feeling overwhelmed to bring you back to a place of calm:
- Pause, slow down and take some deep breaths.
- Talk through what you are worrying about with a friend or loved one – often saying it out loud can take it out of your whirring mind.
- Write it down – make a brain dump of all that is going through your mind. Think about splitting this into things you can change and things you can’t. Then, make a list of actions that you can take to make things better.
- Simplify – what are you over complicating? Can you simplify things and make things as easy as possible? How can you make things more manageable?
- Delegate and ask for help then accept the help!
- Take one step at a time and do one thing at a time – multi tasking adds to the feeling of overwhelm.
- Look at batching or blocking activities to save time and be more efficient – e.g. answer all your emails in one go, block out a set time for admin, take all your product photos in one go. This saves time moving from task to task mentally and physically.
- Use your energy wisely – what is a good use of your time?
- Make your to do list achievable. What time have you actually got today and what can you realistically get done in that time?
- Set reminders on your phone to help you remember the important things and save mental energy trying to remember things.
- Prioritise what is important and do this first.
- Drop anything from your to do list that is non-essential along with any ‘shoulds’ or guilt.
- Say no to things that you don’t want to do and that aren’t yours to do without the need to over-justify – remember saying no is an important part of self-care.
- Lower your impossibly high standards, cut yourself some slack and drop the need for perfection. Good enough is fine! Remember completed is better than perfect.
- Build in time for rest – remember rest is a productive use of your time and stops burn out.
- Be kind and gently with yourself – remind yourself you’re doing the best you can.
- Have physical reminders of calming affirmations and things to do when you’re overwhelmed to calm yourself down – often we can’t think straight when we’re overwhelmed so these help to nudge us in the right direction.
- Schedule in some time for self-care – even if it is only a 10-minute window – check out this post for creating time for self-care.
- Go for a quick walk in nature to gain some perspective or try a guided meditation/yoga nidra meditation to help relax you and calm your busy mind. Look around you and notice something you can hear, see, smell, taste and feel. Anything which grounds your energy will help stop your mind whirring and bring you back into the present moment. The more you can stay in the here and now, the less overwhelmed you will feel with what has happened in the past and what is coming up in the future.
- Create strong boundaries to help you maintain your peace and protect your energy.
- Give yourself permission to put your needs, health and well-being first.
- Hand back responsibility for things that aren’t yours.
- Step out of other people’s drama and protect your peace.
- Let people take responsibility for their own lives – you don’t have to fix everyone else and their problems.
- Remember tomorrow is a new day and you’ve done enough today.
I hope you have found some helpful tips to find calm again during overwhelm.
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