One of the biggest challenges I see people facing today, women especially and myself included, is navigating through that constant state feeling of overwhelmed.
It seems no matter what time of year it is, we feel as though there’s more to be done than we have time for. But once we take a moment to stop and really look at what absolutely needs to be done, we often realize that there is plenty of time to accomplish the essentials. What we may have perceived as being overwhelmed was really just a feeling. Unfortunately feelings can be habit-forming and chronic overwhelm can mean trouble for our happiness goals. Yet, somewhere deep down, we know we are strong enough and capable enough to accomplish the important things and to do them well, and that striving for perfection is not productive.
Many times, however, we are too tired or stressed to see this clearly or be able to connect with our inner strength. So what does one do in the moment to break out of that overwhelm feeling that can be so detrimental to our health and happiness?
As your local Holistic Lifestyle Coach, I offer you these three tips to shift your energy and get you pointed in the right direction:
3 Surefire Ways to Overcome Overwhelmingness
1. Practice Alternate Breathing
When you’re so overwhelmed that you can’t even think straight, I recommend the Alternate Breathing Technique. Pranayama, as it’s called in Ayurvedic medicine, is so easy to practice and does wonders to your mental and emotional state.
- Sit comfortably on the floor or in a chair and close your eyes.
- Block your right nostril using your right thumb.
- Inhale deeply through your left nostril for 6 seconds.
- Close the left nostril and hold your breath counting to 4 seconds.
- Release the right nostril letting out the exhale for 8 seconds.
- Next, inhale deeply through your right nostril for 6 seconds.
- Close the right nostril and hold your breath counting to 4 seconds.
- Release the left nostril letting out the exhale for 8 seconds.
- Repeat for another 4 or 5 rounds.
This technique helps balance the body and clear the mind. It is great for reducing anxiety, increasing energy, and improving sleep among other benefits.
2. Practice Self-Gratitude
When you start to doubt yourself, make a list of all the things you accomplished in the last week. Thank yourself for each an every task. Remember to include everything you did, whether it was laundry, visiting a friend in need, going to work, or getting your haircut, say thank you. So often we focus on what we haven’t done that we don’t even realize how much we did get done, leaving us feeling inadequate and even more overwhelmed.
3. Shift Your Mindset
When you feel overwhelmingness coming on, nip it in the bud with a personal catch phrase. For example, “I have plenty of time to do what needs to get done.” Remembering to say this phrase to yourself at the first signs of an overwhelm storm brewing can help lessen your stress levels and trigger your brain to remember the reality of the situation rather than the memory or habit you may have fallen into. Try saying this phrase, or whichever one you come up with, to yourself first thing in the morning in order to set the stage for a calm and productive day.
I hope you will give these tips a try. Remember to post your results!