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How To Cope With Feeling Overwhelmed

Have you got too much on your plate? Does it feel like you’re constantly juggling things to keep everyone around you happy? Is your mind racing and constantly running through a never ending to do list? These feelings and thoughts can become overwhelming, the stress can cause your heart to race, you might start lashing out at those around you and no one wants that. Use these seven tips to regain calm, and help you deal with feeling overwhelmed. There are seven tips here, so try a new one every day for a week and let me know how you get on;

Take Control By reading this article you’ve already recognised that you’re not yourself and you’re looking for advice on how to manage things. You’ve already taken the first steps to taking back control. A great way to gain focus, and more control of your situation set yourself some goals. Start small and make sure your goals are; Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Timely.

Prioritise Tasks Write down all the tasks you have running through your head, try not to worry about the length of the list. Take a 5 minute break away from the list and then grade each task by how much of a difference they are going to make to you. Prioritise the ones that are going to impact you the most.

Exercise This might sound like a bit of cliché, and you’re probably feeling like you don’t have the time or energy to embark on a new fitness regime, and I hear you. But consciously moving your body can reduce the intensity of the emotions you’re feeling. Exercise can also be a great distraction and you’re likely to find that your mind becomes calmer and your thoughts are clearer. You don’t have to start training for a marathon, light regular exercise will still do the job.

Connect with friends & family I appreciate that the thought of arranging a social gathering might feel like you’re adding even more to your plate, making you feel even more overwhelmed but connecting with those around you is really important for your mental wellbeing. Socialising gives your mind a chance to be distracted and engage in different conversations and thoughts. You may also find that talking to those close to you about how you’re feeling helps. How you connect with your friends and family can be as simple as turning off the Tv when you have dinner with family and chatting instead. Or FaceTime a friend you’ve not spoken to in a while. Try and connect with someone at least once a day and you’ll notice a difference in your mental wellbeing.

Avoid unhealthy habits We all have our guilty pleasures, but try to avoid using alcohol or drugs to mask the problem. It can give you short term relief, but the only way you’ll be able to manage things again and stop feeling overwhelmed is to address the root cause and create healthy ways of coping.

Take time to notice the positive things When we’re feeling overwhelmed and life is getting on top of us, it’s very easy to get bogged down by our negative thoughts and focus on the things we haven’t yet achieved. Taking a couple of minutes to reflect on your day and think about the things you have achieved, the things you enjoyed, the times where you smiled can have a huge positive impact on your overall mental health. You can write them down in a notebook if you want too, but you can also just think them through. They don’t have to be hugely significant, even the small things matter and should be recognised as positive achievements.

Make some time for you It’s very easy to forget to make time for you, and the things you enjoy. Working long hours, looking after family, getting the housework done mean that we can get caught up doing other things and forget to take some time for ourselves. It’s really important that we make time for socialising, relaxing and exercise as its proven to help manage stress and increase happiness. Looking after yourself means you’ll be able to look after others better, and by making time to relax and unwind you’ll start to feel calmer and more rational. What you do to make time for yourself can be anything that makes you happy and that you enjoy; getting a good nights sleep, listening to guided relaxation or even saying no to something you don’t want to do.

Address the root cause If you’ve tried the tips above and are still feeling overwhelmed and the pressure is still getting you down, then it may be time to consider looking at what’s causing you to feel overwhelmed and to create new ways of coping. This isn’t something you have to do on your own, I can support you on this journey. By talking things through with me we’ll be able to uncover what situations, emotions or events are triggering these feelings. We’ll then build new coping mechanisms and healthy reactions so you feel less stressed and can get back to being you.

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