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5 Things You Can Do When You Feel Overwhelmed

5 Things You Can Do When You Feel Overwhelmed

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.

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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.

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3. Acceptance

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.

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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.

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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

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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