No wonder I feel overwhelmed! Hell, sometimes I’m barely treading water. But there are times when I feel calm, cool collected and focused. It has nothing to do with my outer surroundings but rather with my inner perspective. Its when I feel like I “have my shit together” that most often times I do.
The question is not really how to “beat” overwhelm but really how to circumvent that feeling by CHOOSING + PRIORITIZING what we give our precious attention to. Our brains have the amazing ability to filter information for us (I wrote more about taming our scattered brains here) and here are some ideas that I know work for me (when I actually implement them!)
Shift the focus to what is working
Sometimes the feeling of overwhelm stems from only seeing the negative- the things you can’t do, the things you don’t have time for, the “should haves” and the feelings of not being productive. If we looked at all the things in our day that were not working it would be very easy to feel shitty. Instead shift your focus in those moments of stress and take stock of what is actually working. Practice recognizing gratitude. This doesn’t have to be a formal practice- take a moment to look at your immediate surroundings (your kids, your house your healthy body, your dog, your garden, your messy kitchen) and acknowledge that you DO have a lot of good in your life.
Set yourself up for success
Turn your text buzzers off. Decide to check emails at specific times during the day. Set social media thresholds on your phone to prohibit aimless scrolling. Plan the night before. Start the day with a quick morning ritual to design your day. Decide how you want to feel. Go minimalist- get rid of the crap that is holding you back… is your laundry situation out of control?? Get rid of those clothes that “don’t spark joy” or go through the kids toys and store them to take out on a day where you are feeling crazy! Let them explore a box of “new to them” toys while you pack up the other shit to swap out. Have easy solutions for storing things in every room so cleaning up doesn’t have to take forever. Here is another post about more about ways to get organized and another post about how I try to get my shit together and one more about how to set boundaries and be productive as a work -from-home mama!
Align before you resign
Lean on your tools. Whip out the essential oils, oracle deck, crystals, incense, mala prayer beads, meditative coloring books and take a moment to BREATHE. And check in with yourself. What is really going on? Why are you feeling this way? What needs to change in this moment to free yourself? Allow a few minutes to do this check in. I love using a simple hand cupping breathing technique with my oils to do this…. grab a grounding oil like Frankincense, Black Spruce, Orange or Bergamot and drop a few into your palm. Gently rub your hands together and bring to your nose and deeply inhale for 5-10 breathes. Get aligned with how your are feeling and how you want to feel before you let the shitty feelings ruin your entire day!
If you can’t tell already, I am obsessed with essential oils (its the best virtual business ever, all you need is some wifi and motivation!) , they have seriously changed my life. Here are details about the oils I use and how to join my oily community
Call for backup
Asking for support or outsourcing is what successful people do. There is no weakness or shame in asking for some help. Figure out the areas that you could really use some assistance and staff up! I hired a cleaning lady for one day a month and it was awesome!!! Find a good neighborhood babysitter or even better start a co-op with your neighbors to trade babysitting hours! Give yourself the gift of time + space away from the kiddos to get your shit together! Or just go to a yoga class (or take a shower). Its an investment into your mental health bank.
Give yourself a break
Not everyone can do everything all the time. Doing nothing is something. Filling every second of the day with something “productive” is actually not really productive at all. Cut yourself some slack. Let the kids watch a show so you can chill out and veg for a minute. Let the kitchen stay messy after lunch or dinner for a bit to just chill. Tell yourself nice things instead of all the things you “should have” done today.
Is this a time issue or is it just not a priority.
The next time you find yourself saying “I just don’t have time to …” replace it with “It’s just not a priority” and see how the energy shifts and how you feel about what you just said. “Its just not a priority for me to “do the dishes” or “Its just not a priority for me to workout” Its just not a priority for me to do work on my business… etc. This is a great way to figure out what is actually a priority.
Drop a comment, tell me how you get through the overwhelm!!