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Overcoming the Overwhelm

Why you’re feeling overwhelmed – and what to do.

If, like many of us, you have a ‘to do’ list that reaches from here to infinity and it just keeps growing, it’s time to make some changes your list.

  • LISTS

The first step to not allowing this to get you down is to recognise that your to do list will never actually be ‘finished’. And let’s accept that that’s ok! By just focusing on what you’re doing at that moment, rather than all the things you have to do, can start to feel more in control of things.

One suggestion is try having two to-do lists, one with the list of all the things you’d like to do that day, and another with just one item on it, the ONE thing we have to get done. Once you’ve completed that one thing, you can move another item on to the ‘one important thing’ list. That way, you’ve only ever got one thing to do, and it’s alot less overwhelming.

  • SOCIAL MEDIA

Yes, there is a dark side to social media. We all intend to spend 10 minutes and end up emerging 2 hours later, frustrated about the waste of precious time.  Social Media can also make us feel as though we are missing out on things, not achieving enough or not where we want to be in our lives.

If social media is causing you to waste time and is dragging down your self-esteem it could be time to reduce the amount of time you spend on it, ‘unfollow’ those that make you feel bad about yourself and streamline your feed with only things than enhance your life and boost your mood.

  • YOUR MOBILE

As we all know, our phones can take over our lives and destroy our peace of mind. Try switching off notifications on your phone so that you have to go into Twitter, Instagram or your email in order to catch up on the action. When our phones are constantly buzzing and updating us it can be just another demand on our time and energy. It can be a life-changer. Try it.

  • TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF

Self-care is a big issue these days. We are often reminded that taking a yoga class, a walk at lunchtime or that relaxing bath is good for us, but how often do they get pushed aside in favour of more pressing responsibilities?

Rest is as important as activity in helping us to live happy, productive and successful lives. If your battery is running on empty, you’re not as effective, life feels harder, plus everyone around you will suffer too if you’re feeling grumpy!

Schedule in time for yourself and treat is with the same importance as a meeting with your boss.

  • PERFECTIONISM

Perfectionists set impossibly high standards for themselves and even when they meet those standards, they’re likely to keep raising the bar. The result? You never feel good enough no matter how well things are going.

If this sounds like you, try to remember that ‘perfection’ is not actually a thing. It’s an opinion. Everyone’s opinions are going to be different, so you’re really setting yourself up for something impossible.

When you notice you’re setting your standards impossibly high and putting too much pressure on yourself, ask yourself ‘Can I settle for ‘good enough’ over perfect?’ Remember that you are lovable and worthwhile, flaws and all. Even if you make a mistake, it’s very rarely unfixable and mistakes are an essential part of learning and getting better anyway.

  • SAYING ‘NO’

This is a great quote by productivity guru David Allen: “You can do anything, but not everything”.

Perhaps you want to make sure people are happy; maybe you don’t want to miss out or you’re worried about upsetting people if you say ‘no’ to things.

The truth is, setting healthy boundaries and saying ‘no’ could be a key step to helping you to feel less overwhelmed and overloaded. By saying no, you’re ensuring that the quality of the things you do say yes to is higher. It’s like they say on a plane, ‘put the oxygen mask over yourself first before helping others’, and the same is true in life! Take care of yourself first.

  • TIME TRAVEL

In life there is only ever one thing happening, and that’s what’s happening right now. The rest of the crazy jumble of stuff that can go on in our brains is stuff from the past, or the future.

Meditation is the key to staying more present and living a happier and calmer life. When we live in a hectic world peace of mind sometimes has to be created, not left to chance.  Remember you are here to enjoy your life, grow and learn.

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