Overwhelm? A gift?
Chances are you are distracting yourself right now, reading this post, because you need a break from everything on your desk.
How can overwhelm, with all the negative connotations, emotions and resistance, be anything other than a bad thing?
Well that’s the misunderstanding. Overwhelm is not a ‘thing.’ It’s not a good thing, a bad thing or even a tangible thing you can hold in your hands.
Overwhelm is an experience we create when we don’t have clarity. Overwhelm is what we feel when we don’t choose. Overwhelm is what wins when our bodies get sick and are unable to hold it all together.
So yea. Overwhelm is a gift.
It’s a gift of insight – telling you to stop the madness and get clear of all of the things you are keeping track of in your head.
It’s a gift of suggestion – your unconscious telling you to make a change with what you prioritize as important.
It’s a gift of strength – your body’s way of telling you what it can and can’t handle.
So when you start to feel overwhelmed, try approaching it this way:
- Say “thank you, overwhelm” – out loud! You can see it for what it is.
- Take out a notebook and do a brain dump. No order, no lists, no judgements. Just write it all out. You may be surprised at how relieved you will feel when your thoughts and ideas are no longer trapped inside your brain.
- Organize the dump. You will see repeated words; themes. Ideas circled or underlined, maybe indicating more importance or purpose. Then, in a way that makes sense to you, wrangle that mess and create your list of main priorities – personal, business, volunteer – keep them commingled or separate them out. The point is to get them organized.
Prioritizing is Critical to Ending Overwhelm.
Next, prioritize your list. Will your list be prioritized by the easy tasks, the simple to-do’s that will clear more space for the bigger, more integrated items on the list? Or will your list start with large projects, and critical first steps for each, and then handling the tactical stuff as it arises?
Whatever your approach, always come back to the list and update it, based on what you check off. Ask yourself, “What is my first NEXT step in getting this (task, step, item) done?”
And then, do it. Take the actions you need to take to move closer to your goal. One prioritized and intentional step at a time.
So the next time overwhelm tries to gift itself to you, how will you receive it?
Enjoy your entrepreneurial journey,
– Coach Remy