wavy pattern

overwhelm

When busy, busy, busy turns to overwhelm

- Posted byHannah Miller

“Han, a quieter day is never coming.”

My wise brother-in-law said this to me years ago. BC. (Before children).

I have spent most of my adult life chasing the quieter day, the quieter mind. Thinking, when I just get this done, then I’ll… I’ll just clear these decks, then I’ll sit down.

Twenty years later, I can honestly say he was so right (sorry Simon for not taking your word for it). Apart from the exception to the rule of going on holiday, (and let’s face it, it’s a total ordeal to just get ready to have a break), these quieter days we long for just don’t come.

What tends to come instead, is waves of overwhelm. Too many tabs open in our brains. Too much to do. Too many demands on our time. So much to do that we often just feel that none of it is being done very well and so then comes the guilt. Add in a global pandemic and some high-profile human rights issues to your daily grind of work, kids, family and the like, then no wonder we feel it’s all a bit too much.

Here’s a few tell tale signs you’re possibly dealing with some feelings of overwhelm:

  • Being irritable, touchy or over-sensitive
  • Over-reacting to small changes, asks or upsets
  • Erratic eating and/or sleeping
  • Brain won’t switch off
  • Knots in your stomach
  • Forgetfulness
  • Pulling away from people, tuning out
  • Lack of focus or motivation
  • Trying to get stuff done on your to-do list but not knowing where to begin and so doing none of it

Add in a global pandemic and some high-profile human rights issues to your daily grind of work, kids, family and the like, then no wonder we feel overwhelmed.

The first stage in dealing with overwhelm is to recognise that the quieter day you crave is probably not coming. That miracle-cure-life-balance isn’t coming. Life’s busy, everyone!

Instead, you need to build in some mechanisms that step by step bring about change in your life, both in that moment and for the future, too. (I asked you on socials what some of your methods were and you gave me lots of ideas).

Important point: There are no quick fixes, no easy strategies out there for hopping off this crazy hamster wheel.

Also important point: There ARE some things we can do. We don’t have to stay on planet stressed-out. There is so much more that is in our control than we realise (or perhaps want to realise?)

Can I give you six suggestions?

 

This, like most of the stuff we talk about, isn’t solved in an instant. It is about small choices, over a lifetime, not to accept things as they are but to begin to make those marginal gains that help us to move on from ‘uptight and overwhelmed’ to ‘happy and productive.’

Hannah x

 

 

P.S. Photo is me on my hols in a less overwhelming moment. I was in fact overwhelmed with the beauty of the place. So good for the soul.

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