Overwhelm can seep into our like slow rising flood water, or it can hit like a torrent flash flood. We hear “I’m just overwhelmed.” from our patients often. Why? Because this is a completely normal part of life. Let me say that again. Overwhelm is a completely normal part of life. How you react is the important part to responding well, or getting your butt kicks. Like Corey says “ Sometimes you’re the hammer and Sometimes you’re the nail. “ Here is one way the hammer responds:
Step one. Give yourself a moment.Stop, breathe, recognize that you are overwhelmed. Accepting that you are in this position is really important. Why? Because often we want to deny that we are over-leveraged, over-committed, and over-whelmed. This is like standing waist deep in water and asking someone to turn on the faucet. So, instead take a moment a recognize where you are, this will prepare you to take the action you need.
Step two. Triage.
What are the critical things that must be handled in the next 12 – 24 hours. Those take priority, excuse yourself from other commitments, and focus on the critical items.
Step Three. Prioritize as you need.
Take some time to sit down to list out what you are committed to. Prioritize them by deadline, importance, cost.. whatever makes sense in your situation.
Step Four. Adjust expectations.
Take time to communicate your timelines and prioritization with the people that need to know. This will take the pressure off. They will appreciate the communication, and you will be relieved by the space it gives you.
Step 5. Execute.
Get back to it! keep making progress, checking things off the list will ease your overwhelm, and you will feel the water receding.
Remember to take time to put something in place to help you learn from this! What were some caution signs that you didn’t pay attention to before you were overwhelmed? How did you set yourself up to get into this position? Do you need a master class in saying No? Commit to learning from this, and help yourself for the future.
Team Trivida is here. Long-term stress can really do a number on your health. If you have concerns about what stress is doing to your wellness, lets chat, the team is here to support you!
Megan Johnson is an integrative life coach that works with #TeamTrivda on balance and wellness. More from her here.