How do you move through, get over, or even bypass being overwhelmed. There are some things in life that can literally cause us to feel like an avalanche has covered us. Maybe your situation is not as traumatic as an avalanche, but it’s enough to stop you in your tracks to gasp for air. Dealing with overwhelm is certainly an emotion we have all dealt with.
Sometimes just trying to prioritize or make decisions can cause you to become overwhelmed. The process of working through a matter can involve an outcome for others or a result that may change the trajectory of your life.
I’ve been there! When my mind gets full of the what ifs, I may resort to shutting down and just do nothing. The problem with that is the ripple effect of not moving. When things don’t move, nothing else moves. So now that we know being overwhelmed is part of life, what can we do?
Working Through It
What will help us in dealing with an emotion that can seem bigger than us? First, acknowledge it is an emotion. With every emotion that we experience we have to decide how to respond. Secondly, we have the choice to remain in that emotion or decide to face it head on. If we face it, we then figure out how we can at least minimize it. Thirdly, what we decide to do will result in what happens to those emotions.
If we decide to sit in our overwhelm, it will eventually sit on us. It may deflate our confidence, inflate our doubt, or possibly paralyze us. However, we can shift our mindset to looking at what we have control over. We can begin to manage how we allow our emotions to affect us. It is also important to reflect on our choices that may have created the overwhelm.
When I reflect on those times, I have felt overwhelmed. Like many women, it was because I took on too much, had high expectations of a situation that I possibly had little to no control over, or I chose to shoulder a weight that was not assigned to me.
So, when we are feeling overwhelmed, let’s work on our focus of navigating through that challenge or experience without adding all the extras like “I have to.” “What will they think?” or “I feel like a failure.” Embrace the opportunity to readjust or shift to a space that provides us the chance to take deep breaths, re-evaluate the situation and seek new or different opportunities to move forward. Consider not settling but shifting.
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