Welcome to overwhelm town, population – me!
I know the feeling, and I know you know the feeling too. We have all visited this place, it’s a regular part of the crazy society we live in.
Since I’m currently visiting overwhelm town I thought I would share with you 3 of the tell-tale signs that warn me I’m here, and 3 of the things I do to get my balance back.
Here we go!
1. Increased anxiety levels
I know I am overwhelmed when even writing the word ‘anxiety’ makes me feel like I’ve had 20 espressos. When there are too many things vying for our attention and we don’t know where to start, anxiety can be the wake-up call that our mental state needs just as much attention as our to-do list.
How to help?
I like to purge everything I’ve been bottling up. A big part of anxiety is the damage it does while we keep it inside of ourselves. Writing it down, telling a friend or even a therapist can really take the edge off. When we say the things we are worried about out loud, they instantly lose some of their power over us. So stop wasting your energy trying to hold it all in and look perfect on the outside – look after your inside and the outside will begin to follow suit.
2. So many thoughts that you don’t know where to start
I have this one all the time! I get so buried in ‘shoulds’ and goals that I don’t know where to start, so instead of starting one thing and seeing it through to the end, I hop from one train of thought to another until I’m so tired that I start to feel hopeless about it all.
The answer, for me at least, lies with a good old pen and paper. Prioritise, list pros and cons if you need to. But the main reason to write things down is simply to get them out of your head. Your working memory can only hold so many things at once.
If you try to juggle too much in your mind, your brain will underperform. Think of a laptop with too many browser tabs open…yep, it’s the same thing. Write it all down, then think through it all one item at a time.
3. Riding the Emotional Rollercoaster
Obviously, mood swings can be a sign of many things. We most commonly associate them with hormonal issues. But sometimes it’s the battle in your head between optimism and pessimism. One minute you’re riding high on a wave of positivity, the next you are reminded of your overdraft, work problems, or something similarly sobering.
Hack your brain chemicals
My top tip here is to grab a workout, a walk, or if you really can’t leave your desk, a quick desk-side yoga session. Just move, breathe, and let the dopamine flow.
Do you have any top tips to share? Leave me a comment below!