There are days – those days – when the sun goes down way before I’m ready, and my too long and largely untouched to-do list must get rolled over to tomorrow – AGAIN. When my flawlessly planned day gets sideswiped because my toddler wakes up with a fever of 102.6 and is screaming. Or when I’m driving home after dropping my girls off to school and my car suddenly overheats leaving me stranded.
We all have bad days like this. And after the immediate shock wears off, we move on and get over it. But when a horrendously bad day turns into a week, month, or even a year – it’s open season for overwhelm.
I’ve experienced the feeling of overwhelm too many times to count. I think I may even be an overachiever in the realm of letting stress and the demands of life get the best of me.
You may be in the thick of an overwhelming day, or even a really bad year. Maybe you have a new baby at home and can’t get more than two hours of consecutive sleep. Or maybe you’ve decided to go back to school with everything else still in full effect. Maybe you’re like me and are launching into a new business. Or your family is dealing with disappointment or tragedy.
There are endless reasons and seasons that can cause even the strongest and level-headed person to get overwhelmed. I’ve been there a thousand times both for the exciting blessings in my life that required all of me and the curses that I’m thankful I’ll never see again.
Feeling overwhelmed is the place wherein we’re overtaken completely by something and the rest of our life is crying out – Hey! We’re over here!
And it’s this division that really amps up the stress and anxiety.
Just know things have a way of smoothing themselves out over time. New and unfamiliar things eventually become second nature, and hard things become easier over time or go away all together.
The key is knowing how to focus in on what is going to be most helpful to YOU. For example, if you have a newborn baby, soaking up that little blessing and keeping your body healthy and rested needs to be your main focus – NOT the laundry. So, get help if you can. And let your other kids watch some Doc McStuffins so you a take a nap!
On the other hand, if you’re overwhelmed by the daily demands of your life; focus on all the areas you can’t let go of and find ways to make them easier. Then get rid of the dead weight. Oftentimes, our comfortable ways of doing things are broken and ineffective. But we keep doing things our familiar way because we fear the learning curve of doing something new will be too high. It may be in the short run, but you’ll be thanking yourself in the long run.
Even though life is sometimes tough – YOU’RE TOUGHER!
You need to roll up your sleeves with your goal in mind and get it done, bit by bit. There’s no magic formula for overwhelm – just the sheer belief that it won’t always be like this is all you need.
In the meantime, we all need words of wisdom and encouragement in the middle. The following quotes and scriptures were designed to infuse you with strength and remind you to KEEP GOING. And don’t forget the smile!
When you find yourself getting overwhelmed, the first thing to do is STOP. Take a break and look at your current situation and identify what’s causing you to feel overwhelmed in the first place.
Decide what is most important and focus on that and let everything else wait. For example, if you have a sick kid or kids just focus on tending to their needs and making them feel better. And it’ll pass soon and you can get make to normal life.
If you’re working on a time intensive work project, look for ways that allow you to spend more time getting that project done, so that looming deadline can stop hunting you down!
Don’t feel guilty for changing your regular routine for a season if it’s needed. Focusing on what’s most important and learning to make peace with what you can’t focus on will lower stress and anxiety.
Worrying doesn’t benefit you or the situation, so going with the flow will serve you well.
Part of getting on the other side of overwhelm is knowing you’re not alone. Do all the other moms reading this post a favor and type in the comments how you handle challenges and difficult situations.