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  • Writer's pictureAmélie

What to do when feeling overwhelmed

If you are anything like me, you have an infinite to do list that never seems to end. Lists help keep me organized, and sometimes when I seem to have too much on the go simultaneously, all of projects, ideas, plans, activities, tasks, etc suddenly become overwhelming. Anyone else in the same boat?

It's normal to feel overwhelmed at times and it might show up differently for different people. We feel overwhelmed when emotion, thoughts and/or physical sensations become too much. You might find yourself forgetting things, getting easily irritated, having a hard time processing information, crying, experiencing headaches and other bodily pains, having trouble breathing, etc.

Here's what might:

  1. Step back First step, in those situations is to take a step back, allow your nervous system to pause and regulate. When we are feeling overwhelmed we are experiencing a stress response. Our body needs us to slow down and return to safety. It might look like physically leaving the room you are in, going for a walk, taking some deep breath.

  2. Assess where you are at Have your basic needs been met; did you get quality sleep, made time to eat something nourishing, when is the last time you had a glass of water? Where are you at in your hormonal cycle? Ask yourself : What do I need right now?

  3. Give yourself what you need. Only you will know what you truly need, it may be sleep, a workout, reaching out to a friend, talking to your therapist, dancing, eating something you love, spending time with a loved one, etc. Real self-care is assessing our needs and answering to them as they come up. It's about allowing the same grace you would offer other people and being gentle with yourself like you would be with a child.

  4. Prioritize/Delegate/Learn to say no There are times when we may feel like we have to do it all, but it's ok to say no. It's ok to ask for help. It's ok to put things on hold. It's ok to change your mind. Take some time to assess what you "have" to do, and make some decision. Not everything needs to get done and most importantly not everything needs to get done by you.

  5. Take action Go do one of the small thing (once you are rested), just so you can create that momentum. Sometimes action is the key to feeling stuck or anxious.

  6. Consult a therapist If you need additional support, don't hesitate to reach out a therapist (or ART therapist 😉).

I hope this is helpful, please feel free to share and/or get in touch if you would like to book a session!

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