5 Questions To Ask When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed And Stuck
Are you feeling overwhelmed and stuck?
Do you look at your life and wonder how you are going to do it for even one more day?
Are the pressures brought on by work and family and health and home just becoming too much to bear?
Let me help you with some questions to ask yourself if you are feeling overwhelmed and stuck.
#1 – How overwhelmed am I?
I just got off the phone with a client who had contacted me two days ago. She was SO overwhelmed and stuck and she was at the end of her rope.
We set up an appointment for today and guess what! The overwhelm that she had felt just a few days back had evaporated. She had had a bad few days and just couldn’t take it anymore. But then she had a few good ones and felt better.
I am not saying that what happened to her will happen to you but I am saying to check in with yourself about just how overwhelmed you are.
You are feeling overwhelmed today. Were you feeling the same way yesterday? Or last weekend?
Or perhaps was last weekend great and yesterday manageable but today has sucked in every way possible?
So ask yourself how overwhelmed you are. Whether it’s short or long term, it’s important to define it so that you can understand what you are dealing with so you can manage it effectively.
If you recognize your overwhelm is the result of what is happening TODAY then steps must be taken to fix what is happening. If your overwhelm has been with you longer then it’s time to make a plan to deal with it definitively.
#2 – Do I know what EXACTLY is overwhelming me?
So my client was sitting there telling me how completely overwhelmed she was. I asked her what exactly it was that was overwhelming her.
Together we did a little excavation and made a list.
- She had a new job and one of her co-workers had it out for her
- She was moving out of the house and her mother wasn’t being supportive.
- She was having car trouble.
- She was struggling with credit card debt.
Two things happened when we made that list. First, she realized what exactly it was that was overwhelming her. And when she saw how short the list was it took away some of the power of the overwhelm. She saw that the rest of her life was great; she was just struggling in a few places.
Secondly, she realized that she could actually fix some of the things that were causing her the overwhelm. Fix them right away.
And knowing she had the power to change things made her feel much stronger right away.
#3 – What can I do to change what is overwhelming me?
For my client, we worked through things step by step, figuring out what she could do about each thing. Because we knew that if we fixed the issues she would feel less overwhelmed and stuck.
As to her new co-worker, my client knew that she could only change herself and her reaction to her co-worker and so she decided to do that. She would share nothing of herself with her co-worker and she would work hard to do her very best at work and be well thought of in the office.
With her mother, she recognized that she would be out of the house in 2 weeks and she would no longer have to deal with her mom. Their relationship was, by the way, causing a HUGE amount of the overwhelm in her life. She realized this by making her list. Seeing it on paper made it stand out to her.
As to the car and the debt, she knew that with this new job she would start making more money. She made a plan to put aside money every week to work on her car and chip away at the credit card debt.
At the end of this exercise she felt SO much better. She knew that she had a plan to take care of the overwhelm in her life.
#4 – Am I taking care of myself?
If you are feeling overwhelmed and stuck it could be that you aren’t taking care of yourself.
When we are feeling out of control of our life our physical health tends to pay the price.
Are you sleeping well? Taking breaks from work? Getting your exercise? Not using food for medication? Laughing with your friends?
All of these things are a very important part of managing feeling overwhelmed and stuck.
So take a moment and inventory how your body is feeling. If it is feeling anything but healthy and strong make a plan to change that immediately.
# 5 – Who can I ask for help?
This is the question that for many of us we have a hard time answering.
Why? Because women in America want to do it all themselves.
For whatever reason, the modern woman believes that she can take care of everything in her life as well as the life of her family, her friends and her job. She can go and go and go and go.
And then what happens? She goes to pieces because she just can’t take it anymore.
Reaching out for help is a key part of feeling less overwhelmed.
If you aren’t feeling healthy, reach out to a doctor or a trainer to get you in shape. If that project at work is making you crazy, pull together a team who can help you conquer it with ease. Is your house a mess? Hire an organizer and/or a cleaning service.
And of course, if you want help making a plan to get past your overwhelm and be happy, then you MUST hire a life coach. A life coach will work with you to identify exactly what it is that needs to be addressed so that you don’t feel overwhelmed and stuck.
Are you feeling overwhelmed and stuck? Hopefully not so much anymore.
You know what to do, what questions to ask yourself.
Identify how overwhelmed you are and why. Make a plan to deal with issues that are getting to you. Take care of yourself and ask for help.
So go ahead. Do it! Imagine how much better you will feel if you do.
I am a NYC based Certified Life Coach and mental health advocate. My writing has been published on The Huffington Post, Prevention, Psych Central, Pop Sugar, MSN and The Good Man Project, among others. I work with all kinds of people to help them go from depressed and overwhelmed to confident and happy in their relationships and in their world.