Help! I’m Overwhelmed! 3 Strategies to Reduce Overwhelm

Hello, gorgeous reader. How are you doing? Anyone feeling overwhelmed?

This is something we can deal with. Here are three ways:

  1. Physical Grounding

Sometimes, when we are overwhelmed, we get ourselves far off into the future in our minds: all the things coming up, all the things to think of, all the things that we have to do. You can feel this in your body as tension and your brain is going to spin or freeze because you are stressing yourself out.

Come out of fight/flight mode so you can access your rational brain. In order to do this, try grounding in this way:

  • Set a timer for 5 minutes and start it – that’s your time
  • Sit in a chair and put both feet squarely on the ground and sit up tall.
  • Relax your shoulders and make space around your chest/heart space – try to sit openly with hands open
  • Take 5 slow deep breaths and tell yourself it’s ok, you are safe, we are ok now, some type of safety/soothing phrase
  • Notice the room around you and begin listing the contents in a neutral way: chair, rug, window, water bottle

2. Reduce Inputs to Your Expensive Brain

Your brain is the CEO of the physical system, so we need to take care of it. If you’re overwhelmed, there are too many thoughts and/or inputs to your brain. Much like a phone that gets hot when a lot of apps are open, your brain has too many things open. So, gently start to close the windows.

Laurie DiSantos of Yale, who has a podcast called “The Happiness Lab,” shares a lot of evidence-based research that your phone is actually making you unhappy. Time to take control of it, instead of letting it control you.

Try this:

  • Close windows on the computer and your phone
  • Disable notifications unless absolutely necessary
  • Pick 1 or 2 news outlets to check daily and no more
  • Put limits around your social media: 30 minutes a day at a certain time and stick to your limit
  • Turn off your phone entirely or take a 20 minute walk around the neighborhood without it.
  • Utilize the “Do not disturb” function on your phone
  • Schedule time to write emails and return texts and times to be offline

3. Make a DOABLE Schedule and Stick To It!

Nerdalert! My favorite thing to do on Sunday is plan my week. Plan your week! It will feel so good to your brain to know that you have a plan. If you are overwhelmed, you need a better plan.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Put relaxation and fun on the calendar first (YES YOU CAN)
  • Put downtime and healthy meals on the calendar (YES YOU CAN)
  • OK, now put the other things on there, in doable time increments. Make these time frames comfy and achievable. Set yourself up for success.
  • Follow through with your plan and do not beat yourself up if you stray from the plan, just get curious about why
  • Adjust your plan to be sure you have fun, healthy meals, and doable time blocks
  • Draw boundaries around things that can be outsourced, delegated, or just plain eliminated
  • Get good at saying “Thank you, and no.”

OK lovelies! Loving you so much out there! You can easily reduce overwhelm. Why? Because it’s in your control.

Take control. If you are resisting me, great! That’s a good opportunity to start a mindfulness practice and figure out why. Loving you out there. XO

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