I Let Overwhelm Get to Me

I became overwhelmed. I fell into that trap where everything seemed to be piling on top of me, and I felt like I was being pulled into a million different directions. I’m running a blog, photography business, shampoo business, balancing relationships, working, a dog mom, and so much more. I love the busyness of it all but it came to the point where I was feeling like I couldn’t keep up with everything anymore. But I found that the key to overwhelm is to balance and organize your life. Pick and choose what is most important. Obviously, everything that I was doing felt very important to me but, I finally stopped, took a step back, and looked at where I was, then I figured out where I needed to be. I reminded myself that it is better to start and do things messy, than to never do them at all. I also reminded myself that micromovements towards goals make up the micromovement. Then, I figured out I needed to go from overwhelm to a controlled busy. A place where I could still work on each direction I was being pulled, but much more controlled without getting burn out.

The first thing you need to do to overcome overwhelm is to take a deep breath. Try it right now. Take a few seconds to breathe. Breathing gets oxygen all throughout your body. It is the most important thing that you can do.

The second thing I did to overcome overwhelm was to take a break and go outside to walk and get fresh air each time anything seemed to become tedious, or just too much or even boring. Rest is SO important, so make sure you are giving yourself time throughout the day away from work.

I also made sure I was looking for inspiration in the morning right when I woke up. It became my morning ‘work coffee’, inspiring me to get my work done, and showed me the reasons why I was doing the work. I listened to a podcast, read a book, or watched a good inspiring video. I was able to find my motivation, which when combined with drive is an inferno of power (I will go into more detail about this at another time). Another thing to do right in the morning is to make sure you are not working on work right when you wake up. Weird, huh? Challenging? Try it. Listen to that podcast, read that book, spend some time with God, eat a good breakfast, move your body, and only then after all of that then get to work. I say this because you brain needs to wake up before getting filled with stress. It needs inspiration to get moving in the morning.

The next thing I did was take these two simple steps to organize myself:

1. I lived by my planner

2. I figured out a system that worked for me to schedule my day out

A lot of the overwhelm I was experiencing came from being disorganized. Living by my planner helped me plan out and break everything down in a visual way (I tend to be more of a visual learner). In my planner I wrote out all my appointment dates and scheduled out my whole entire day including blocking out times of my day that I needed to get things done. If you block out times like this, make sure you are blocking out times for rest (and don’t forget to take one full entire day as a Sabbath – plan no work on this day, and be fully present everywhere else). All of this made a huge difference in my day. It helped me break down my entire day and map it all out. I knew exactly what I needed to get done, and it also left no wiggle room to just randomly scroll on social media (I know lots of us are guilty of that one including me).

For those that are super visual or don’t like to block out the entire day ahead of time, I recommend using a whiteboard to keep a list of things that you need to get done throughout the day. Each morning, right before I am about to get to work (or the night before), I write out the checklist of all the things I need to do in the day. I tend to not like an entire day plan, just in the case that something comes up and things need to be moved around (it allows a lot of flexibility). At the beginning of the day choose 3 items from that list that absolutely need to get done (if the world ends tomorrow – they need to get done before that). Then make sure those three items get done for sure and if you have extra time after that then work on the rest of your checklist.

Overall, I had to remind myself that I am not superwoman and I cannot do everything under the sun no matter how much I wanted to. I let go of control. I controlled what I was able to in that moment, and let go of all that I was not able to. After taking tests, students shouldn’t stress about their grade on the test they just took because there is nothing, they can do about it now. Only focus on the in the moment things you can control and let go of all that you cannot.

I hope this helped you out!

Always have Grit. Grace. Gratitude. - Shyann

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