What To Do When Overwhelm Takes Hold.

Do you fear success as much as you fear failure? Don't get caught in the self-sabotage trap! Click through for 5 ways to get through overwhelm like a breeze.


It seems like the older I get, the faster times goes.  I remember my dad saying that to me when I was younger and I thought he was craaaaazy!  Keep in mind, during those days I was lounging in front of the TV watching Josie and the Pussycats or the Brady Bunch; time seemed to stand still.

Fast forward to life as an adult and all of a sudden, moments fly by in a blur.  At this point in my life, I’m planning a wedding, settling into (and trying to decorate) our new home, getting ready for the holidays + in my spare time, launching my art business.  Let’s just say, there’s not a lot of down time.

In fact, there’s too many lists and too many tasks on those lists to check off.  All of the things I’m working on are so exciting!  And amazing!  And I’m not complaining (truly).  I’ve said it before–feeling overwhelmed comes from living a full life, so I try to appreciate the gift that come from feeling this way, too.

I just know that even in the fullest, most exciting moments of my life, I can feel overwhelmed  to the point of it almost ruining the experience.  So here are some tried and true ways I get beyond the fear.  Maybe they’ll help you, too:

  • Make a list.  I know, I know, I was just bashing lists but I’m talking about a big master list to work off of.  I need to know what I need to manage and if I don’t have the big picture, the overwhelm can seem so much worse than it really is.  Seeing everything in front of me puts it into perspective.
  • Break down the list into manageable tasks. For example: I’m not going to finish the big list in a day or maybe even a week, so I try to ration out tasks over a period of time so I can realistically get them done.  Jamming them into an unrealistic time frame only paralyzes me into not taking any action.  I recently made this handy schedule for myself and mapped out 2 days, hour by hour.  Holy Moley!  I was fascinated with how much more I got done when I broke it down into small steps.
  • Ask for help. Why do we think that we have to do it all, alone?  I’m a huge fan of reaching out and asking for expertise/tips from friends and family.  There’s no need to reinvent the wheel and they’re usually pretty happy to help (I know I am when people ask me) so stop being the hero + ask for a hand.
  • Take a step back and evaluate the big picture.  Will this matter in a month? A year? etc.  Getting clear about what my intentions are, keeps me focused.  Overwhelm sometimes comes from the feeling that I’m not doing what I really want to be doing and I end up getting caught up in silly time wasters.  Remembering what my goals are helps me get back on track with what I’m actually excited to work towards.  And then the stress of it all shrinks.
  • Take time for self care.  Overwhelm comes in and sets up camp when I’m not eating right, exercising regularly or getting enough sleep.  So first things first, I have to make sure I’m taking care of my needs and then I can conquer the world–and my list.