Overwhelm is defined as “to bury or drown beneath a huge mass”. If you have ever felt like the pressure of your day to day life has been too much you can likely relate to this definition of overwhelm. Life is busy and when pressure from work and our personal lives build up overwhelm is common. There is no shame in feeling like things are too much and it’s important to know that you aren’t alone. Though it can feel like there is no end in sight there are strategies that can help you address your feeling and break through your overwhelm.

Feelings of overwhelm aren’t good for anyone. On a personal level they can contribute to physical and mental health problems if left unchecked. These feelings can affect family life and even lead to a lack of productivity in the workplace. You owe it to yourself to stay on top of your feelings of overwhelm. Doing so will allow you to live a successful life and take control of your own happiness. In this article we share our best tips on how to stop feeling overwhelmed and help you break through feeling stuck.

How to Overcome Being Overwhelmed

When feeling overwhelmed many people tend to believe that there is no way out. Instead of breaking through their feelings of overwhelm they latch on to the pressure of daily life and become immersed in negative feelings. Overwhelm can become a cycle of working towards overcoming it just to become even more overwhelmed by the daunting idea of getting out of your funk.  But there is hope and with support and a focus on your needs you can learn how to deal with being overwhelmed.

  • Talk to Your Boss – if the primary source of your feelings of overwhelm come from your career you need to speak with your boss. Though it might feel like an awkward conversation it is beneficial for you and your boss to know that your workload is becoming too much. Overwhelm doesn’t make you work harder. Instead it makes you stressed and can lead to a lack of productivity or even an increase in errors. In order to give the best of yourself in the workplace you need to have a manageable workload. For tips on how to address overwhelm with your boss see our previous article “How to Tell Your Boss You Are Overwhelmed”.
  • Lean Into Your Support Network – sometimes all it takes is a little outside perspective or support to help you break through overwhelm. Lean into your support networks when you start to feel like things are becoming too much. Your support network should consist of any person who you feel comfortable sharing your feelings with and can be a spouse, friend or other family member. They may be able to help support you by talking you through your feelings or provide support to lessen your load. If you are looking for help outside of your friends and family, consider reaching out to a life coach for guidance and support in learning how to stop being overwhelmed.
  • Prioritize Time Management – when feeling overwhelmed it’s important that we prioritize our time in order to make the most out of our day. Take control of your schedule by making a daily to do list and allocating time in your day for each activity. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself and keep your list as short as possible. Schedule breaks for yourself throughout your day to make a coffee or take a short walk. Regain control of your schedule and don’t be hard on yourself if you don’t complete every task on your list. Work from a top down priority system and consider your lower tasks to be bonus items if you are having a productive day.
  • Take Care of Yourself – the term self care is a bit of a buzz word lately. Though it’s often advertised as going to a salon or taking a bubble bath there are many ways in which you can take care of yourself. Self care can mean attending therapy, exercising or making social time a priority. No matter how you choose to do it, making yourself a priority can go a long way to reduce feelings of overwhelm.
  • Reduce at Home Stressors – work life is often a cause for overwhelm but sometimes it’s home life that can cause you to feel like things are becoming to much. Though access to help at home may vary from person to person, try to reduce your home stressors as much as possible. Meal prep for the week to take the guessing out of what you should eat. Hire a cleaning service to take care of daunting household tasks. Delegate tasks to people in your family if possible. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and try to accept help when it is offered to you.
  • Know Your Triggers – a therapist or a life coach may be able to help you identify triggers that set off your feelings of overwhelm. If you are able to understand what makes you feel overwhelmed before it happens you may be able to get a head of the cure. Consider our tips on how to find a good life coach in order to help find a support person who can assist you in gaining clarity.

Always Prioritize Yourself

Addressing your feelings of overwhelm is important for your relationships, career and personal health. You can’t live to your fullest potential if you constantly feel overburdened with your responsibilities. Don’t try to tough it out when you feel overwhelmed. Lean into your support networks, talk to your boss, and always ensure you make caring for yourself a priority. There are many things that you can do to help you overcome overwhelm.

Though it is common, feeling overwhelmed doesn’t have to be your normal. Ensure that you prioritize your needs and allow yourself time to decompress when life becomes overwhelming. You won’t always be able to adjust your workload and some household and family responsibilities can’t be put off. But by trying these strategies, you may be able to alleviate some of the pressure. Put yourself first in order to live as your best self not only for others but for you too.