How to banish ‘overwhelm’ from your life
I have a re-occurring nightmare. I’m in corridors and I have to get to an exam. Every time I turn down a corridor, there’s another and I’ve got to get to some exam room but I can’t find it. Then I meet someone and I have to do something else entirely, I remember about the exam, my heart pounds because I’m going to be late, then there’s another emergency task I must do, then I realise I’ve lost my child….but I’m back in the corridor. Then I wake up with the feeling; panic, anxiety, stress, too much on; overwhelm.
Overwhelm; the feeling is horrible. A mounting feeling in which anywhere you turn your head you simply can’t do it. Weary, exhausted with zero mojo. In fact whatever Mojo is, it has more energy simply in those four letters than you have in your entire, depleted system.
Out goes the exercise, in comes the eating any of junk you can get hour hands on….the next thing you know, you feel more tired, your body feels more shit and you can’t cope with anything…bang; hit around the head with the frying-pan labelled ‘OVERWHELM’
So here goes:
1/ Get post-it notes and write down all the ‘can’t’ thoughts on separate post-it notes – what it is on one side, why you can’t do it on the other
2/ Get a board or piece of paper and put two columns A: Things I can control B: Things I can’t control.
3/ Stick your post-its in each column
4/ There should only be ‘weather’ in ‘things you can’t control. If you really believe there’s other stuff in that column, think creatively about ways to get it in the other one
5/ For each post-it in the ‘can control’ column write how you can and when you’ll do it on another post-it and stick it on top. You might need a further post-it for ‘resources I need and how/when I’ll get them’
6/ For any post-its that simply HAVE to be in the ‘can’t control’ column, get a box and put them in it. That’s your worry box. Go bury it some place and take it out if it you need to have a look at them again or realise they can go in the ‘can control’ column. When you bury it, you can have a little moment of anger or grief that you can’t control it – that’s okay, what you can’t control sucks….and that IS OKAY.