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6 Steps To Move From Overwhelmed To Calm

You know those days when you feel like you will never be able to get from overwhelmed to calm?

Those days when everyone and everything is demanding so much from you that you really don’t think that you can take it anymore. Those days where it feels like your head is going to explode.

Let me help you get from overwhelmed to calm. It is possible. It just takes some awareness and action.

#1 – Take deep breaths.

When we are stressed out, the first thing that we do is we stop breathing. Well, not literally stop breathing, because then we would die. But we do unconsciously hold our breath because of increased tension in the muscles used for breathing.

So when you are feeling overwhelmed remember to breathe. Deep breaths into your belly in for 3 seconds and out for 3 seconds. Put your hand over your belly so that you can feel it filling up with air. Do these over and over until you feel a little calmer. Repeat throughout the day as necessary.

It will help you A LOT. I promise.

#2 – Go for a walk.

If it’s at all possible, take some time to go for a walk. There isn’t a woman I know who doesn’t say that her stress levels are always greatly reduced after a walk.

The thing about walking is that it kills two bird with one stone.

Walking encourages deep breathing which calms you down quickly. Also, for some reason, the motion of walking encourages clearer thinking. The rhythm of the stride and the increased oxygen intake can make something that was extremely overwhelming just 20 minutes earlier much easier to manage.

#3 – Identify what is causing the overwhelm.

One of the biggest blockages to getting from overwhelmed to calm is not understanding what is specifically overwhelming you.

A client of mine was SO overwhelmed with her life. She found that she had no energy to get anything done, she yelled a lot at her kids and she could barely stand being with her husband.

She figured that she was just too stressed out by her day to day living and she came to me to help her get more organized.

We talked for a bit and I come to learn that they have 3 new dogs in the house. 3 new dogs. And they were, you guessed it, causing the overwhelm, not her lack of organization.

Once we knew what the cause was we were able to find a solution.

#4 – Share your stress.

Sharing your stress with another person is a key part of dealing with it.

They say that what is kept inside the head is 4x more intense than what is spoken. Also, if you share your overwhelm you might learn something that will help you manage it. We all have things that work for us and sharing them with others can be very helpful.

If you have someone you can talk with about your overwhelm then absolutely do it. Be it a therapist, a friend or a partner, let those overwhelming thoughts out of your head and into the world.

From there they have a reduced power and are easier to deal with.

#5 – Make a plan.

Once you have pinpointed the cause of the overwhelm it is time to make a plan. Without a plan the overwhelm usually doesn’t just disappear. In fact, it often gets worse.

For my client with the dogs, the plan involved crating up the dogs during the dinnertime and also again at bedtime. Not having the dogs bouncing around, distracting the kids and getting into trouble my client was able to focus on the work at hand and not let it stress her out.

No more yelling at her kids. Phew.

#6 – Follow through.

The most important part of making a plan is following through. Even the best made plans don’t work if you don’t follow through.

I have a client who is constantly overwhelmed by her life. She can’t keep her apartment clean, has a difficult time keeping appointments, struggles to do things that involve any planning and who would rather just stay in bed all day.

We made a plan for her to hire someone to clean her apartment once a week and to spend 10 minutes a day neatening up. She was so excited about the plan. And then she didn’t do it. And her apartment stayed a mess. And she continued to be overwhelmed. And even more overwhelmed because she had let herself down by not doing it.

So make sure that you follow through on your plans to deal with your overwhelm. If you don’t your overwhelm could actually truly overwhelm you and that will not be fun.

If you want to get from overwhelmed to calm it is possible and it is possible to do so quickly.

Next time you are feeling overwhelmed get outside and go for a walk, even if it’s just for 20 minutes. Breathe deeply as you stride. You will see that your overwhelm reduces significantly right away.

As you walk, consider what is overwhelming you and make a plan to fix it. If you have someone to help you figure it out even better. And then make it happen.

Manage your overwhelm. Don’t let it manage you.

The 5 Best Things You Can Do for a Friend, Even if You Feel Like You Have Nothing Left to Give

One of the most important pieces of true happiness is intimate connection, good friendships. The care and keeping of a friendship is not always the easiest thing to do, especially with the chaotic life that comes with being a mom, but with a little consciousness and action it can be made easier.

Below you will find a list of the 5 best things you can do for a friend. Do them and not only will you be a good friend but you will find yourself a happier person too.

5 Best Things You Can Do For a Friend

#1 – Support each other and be honest

Friends are great for confiding in. There is nothing better than sitting down with a friend and, over a hot cup of tea, debriefing her about the terrible row you had with your partner the night before. A good friend will listen and commiserate. A good friend will also be honest with you, giving her perspective without judging or berating. And a good friend will take note of what her friend says.

#2 – Make each other laugh

This chaotic, jam-packed and exhausting world that we live in can be a poisonous one. The best antidote is laughter. The physical act of smiling will actually improve your mood and if the smile is followed by laughter the effect is exponentially greater.

#3 – Share experiences

Women’s experiences are markedly similar. It’s almost eerie how alike women’s lives are all over the world.  Being around people with shared experience has twofold benefits. First, it makes you fell less alone because you know other people have experienced what you have experienced. Secondly, you can learn from another’s experience by hearing it’s process and outcome.

#4 – Eat ice cream

Many women feel guilty indulging in any kind of sweet. And standing alone at your kitchen counter shoveling Oreos into your mouth is not a good idea. But the act of sharing something sweet with a friend, one bowl, two spoons, can be a truly bonding and uplifting experience.

#5 – Take walks

Exercise is one of the most important things to do to feel healthy and happy. And walking with a friend is a great, painless way to get exercise. As an added benefit, when you go for a walk you can apply the first 3 principles above and then after the walk you can do the 4th without guilt!

So there you go, the 5 best things you can do for a friend. They aren’t difficult at all; they just take a little bit of time and attention. And the benefits are twofold because you both will be happier because of your efforts. And your happiness will pay itself forward to your children, your partner and your co-workers.

What do you do with your friends that make you happy?

 

If you’re feeling like your friendships are suffering, or you’d like to refocus your energy to create healthier, more joyful relationships, let’s talk. Sign up for your free session with me today.