Overwhelm. How Can We Manage It?

(Read in :03)“All great changes are preceded by chaos.” ~ Deepak Chopra

Last time I mentioned I’m getting ready for an event. It’s a big one. And if I’m honest, I’m smack dab in the middle of several big projects and getting ready to start on a bunch more. I’ll bet you are too. Life’s busy. We shrug our shoulders, numbly resigned to living in a mental blur. We fool ourselves into thinking when we just get through__________(fill in the blank here), things will “settle down.”  Aren’t we cute that way?

My colleagues and I created the event in response to the insidious way that overwhelm and overscheduling have somehow become “normal.” People today, especially women, often find themselves in a perpetual state of chaos and overcommitment. It’s no longer limited to occasional spells when things get crazy, we expect that. Nowadays the hamster wheel never stops. The situation has gotten out of control and it’s become dangerous to health and emotional well-being.

It’s time to get off the merry-go-round

“Half of the troubles of this life can be traced to saying yes too quickly and not saying no soon enough.” ~ Josh Billings

Our intention for this half-day event is to press a virtual pause button and allow our guests to experience a time out. Most important, we hope to refocus and redirect their thinking. We want to show them new ways to see the demands they place on themselves. Why? Somewhere along the way, the ante has been raised to a level that is unsustainable. The result is that amazing, strong, smart women are fooled into believing they have failed.

A few things you can do right now when overwhelm strikes

As I prepared to write this I researched the subject of overwhelm. It used to be occasional, acute. There’s nothing cute about it anymore. It’s chronic. We can, however, do some things to preserve our sanity and navigate the stormy seas a little more successfully. I’m going to borrow a technique from my clever speaker friend Pat McGill and to help you remember, I’m sending you to pick some p’s.

P’s be with you!

  • Pause Just when it seems you need to go faster, stop. Get up, walk around. Get a drink of water. Stretch. Rub your hands together briskly until they warm up. When you sit down again, place your warm hands over your eyes for a little bit. It works like a control-alt-delete does when your computer gets wonky. Good job!
  • Pay attention Eliminate as many distractions as you can so you can stay focused. Know what derails you and do what you can to stay on course. For most of us, it means turning off other devices and tempting websites. Close those tabs!
  • Poo-Poo Perfection Not everything has to be perfect. Sometimes, good enough is all you need. Read that again. Quit obsessing over every tiny detail. It’s ok, honest.
  • Perpetual is Real. “Done” doesn’t exist. We aren’t ever really done! Accept it! We only finish some things and new ones take their place. Isn’t that a good thing, really?  I never want to stop new things from coming along, do you?
  • Pray I couldn’t be true to myself without adding that one. God created us to live abundantly. We were not born to simply exist under a load of guilt and obligation. Always leave some time for that which brings you joy! I send you love, see you Monday!

“Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.” ~Rumi





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