Someone takes acknowledgment for your idea. You’re not invited to that important meeting. You have more work than you know what to do with. You can’t seem to get any help, let alone consideration.
We’ve all been there. We all feel this way at some point. Where we can’t see a path ahead, and we’re not sure how to get from where we are now, to where we want to be.
Like a GPS, if you want to travel across the country, you have to take the first step. The same goes for when you’re overwhelmed. Success is never a straight line.
1. Don’t Do Anything Brash
When you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s easy to get frustrated, annoyed and be generally on-edge. Especially if things in your everyday life all start losing synergy. Maybe you’re not getting enough sleep or haven’t had time to confront your concerns. When that happens, it’s easy to lose your cool.
Instead of choosing that instant gratification and possibly jeopardizing everything you’ve worked for, just stop.
Unless you’re calm, rational and serious, no one is going to take you serious. Breathe, just breathe.
2. Get Some Perspective
As much as you’re going to want to fester in the details and keep thinking about everything, it’s really important to do the exact opposite. Find ways to take a breather so you see the situation from different perspectives.
Especially if your decision means approaching your boss or partner about a big concern. Make sure you’ve taken the time to see things from their personal perspective. What are they going through? Do they know the full picture? Could talking to them help solve the issue?
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.” ― Henry Ford
To get some much needed perspective, it’s important to disconnect from the situation and re-group. The fastest path to this is often by doing something completely different from your regular routine. Take a new walking route. Read a different style of book. Watch a video series or documentary you’ve been putting off. You can de-clutter your desk or home, which may help you feel more in control. My go to happy places are my Audible app, Bible app and Lynda.com. I use those resources, because there’s less of a chance I’ll get distracted like I do on YouTube.
Don’t feel bad about being overwhelmed. It happens to everyone.
“I AM OVERWHELMED!” – Oprah
Despite the fact that you’re a rock star, doesn’t mean you can do everything. Even Superman had to choose between people to save, with his super hearing.
Sometimes we question why we can’t do everything when we should be questioning why we’re so keen on doing everything. Since we can’t change time, the only thing we can do is change ourselves. What if we better utilized our own super human talents?
As hard as it is, there’s always something worse that can happen or someone out there close to you going through much harder times. When you feel your emotions spike, remember all the things you can be grateful for.
Once you’re able to shift your mindset from victim to fighter, you can turn those obstacles into opportunities.
4. Take Action or Else
As soon as you speak up and take action, it’s out into the world, and there’s nothing more you can do. Relief!
“The significant problems we face in life can not be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.” – Albert Einstein
So book that overdue meeting with the colleague you’ve been having problems with. Take some time to bring aside a loved one for the talk. Set aside time to prioritize your life. Do it. Do it now!
When you do, take your time with it. As soon as you’re past the point of bottling things up, snapping and exploding, you can move onto being a constructive so there can be a positive outcome. That’s the ultimate point right?
Second chances aren’t always an option. Sometimes you only get the one. So be courageous, honest and methodical.
5. Pay Better Attention to How You Feel
One of the biggest mistakes I’ve ever made is letting things bottle up until I burst, instead of aiming towards a positive outcome. No one likes a bully. If only I listened to my inner dialogue that told me to stop talking, think about the bigger picture and to wait for a better time to get my point across.
Being overwhelmed isn’t a bad thing, it’s actually the biggest sign that something isn’t going right, and you’re overdue for a change.
“Where focus goes, energy flows” – Jim Carrey
Embrace the fear and failure in the situation, and release it in the most constructive way you can at the time. Feel it. Cry it out. Write it out. Paint it out. Or, talk to someone you trust. Don’t ignore your well being.
Featured photo credit: Ed Gregory via stokpic.com