I’ve spent a lot of the last few weeks thinking about how this thing called life can sometimes feel just a little bit overwhelming. Between regular jobs, launching new projects and managing a home and three children the potential for burnout feels pretty high.
In the last day or so I have had a bit of an epiphany and I have come to realise that spending my time worrying about how much I have to do is pretty counter-productive, that having TOO MUCH work is really something I should be incredibly grateful for, and that the chance to provide opportunities for my three children to develop interests and passions is actually a real blessing!
Much as this realisation has helped I do recognise that feeling (and being) swamped can sometimes creep up you and although a positive outlook will help there are some practical things that I do to help me get through it. I thought I would share them here in case any of you out there are suffering with a little bit of overwhelm too!:
1. D O N ‘ T B E A F R A I D T O S A Y N O
I love to socialise and make time for friends and family, but when things are becoming too much in the here and now I have learned not to be afraid to say no to social commitments. The people who truly love you will understand. Take the time to focus on getting through the current build up and then schedule things to look forward to with the people you love at a time that suits you.
2. M A K E A L I S T
I find that if I take 5 minutes to write a list of all the things I have to do I immediately feel better just because I don’t have to keep all of those “to dos” stored in my head. Once the list is on paper I can look at what really needs doing, what needs doing RIGHT NOW, and what could be done by somebody else. Then I do one thing, and then the next thing and before I know it I’ve been super productive!
3. T A K E A B R E A T H
When I get super-stressed I can feel myself become panicky, my chest becomes tight, I find it difficult to breathe and that becomes all I can focus on! Breathing techniques have been a game changer for me to help me to calm down and by just taking five minutes, focussing on my breath and slowing my breathing down soon has me re-set. You can find a blog post about helpful breathing techniques by clicking here.
4. D O S O M E T H I N G Y O U L O V E
Whether it be for five minutes or five hours the power of taking time to do something that truly brings you joy is unparalleled. Maybe you feel that with so much to do it isn’t possible to take time for yourself, but I promise you that with just ten minutes of doing something that you love you will come back to your other jobs re-energised, revitalised and ready to take on the world! For me that something is usually going for a swim outdoors, or picking up my guitar and singing my heart out. Maybe for you it’s reading a book, going for a walk, watching TV….whatever it is, indulge that for a little while and the world will suddenly feel a little bit brighter!
5. L A U G H
Seeing the funny side of life for me is incredibly therapeutic. I’m incredibly lucky to live with 4 people who make me laugh with them in their own ways every day and that feeling of laughing is a real mood booster! So my advice is, find that friend or family member that makes you laugh your head off, watch something on TV that tickles you pink, however you want to do it have a good laugh and I promise everything else will suddenly feel much better!