Summary: Tackle this common dilemma “I get overwhelmed so easily.” Here’s how to handle your emotions more effectively.
Dear Dr. Sylvia,
Each day I think to myself, “I can’t take any more surprises. I can’t take any more whining. I can’t take anymore bungled messes.”
And then something else happens.
For example, I went into a depression after the news of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s passing hit the world.
Look, I didn’t know her. There was no impact on my daily life. So, what caused my upset?
I couldn’t really do much of worth for the next few days.
In addition, I felt like I lost a grandmother or a loved aunt.
Most importantly, I know she was an icon for women’s rights. She stood for equality for all of us.
What should you do when you disagree with those in power?
And now, there is Texas.
Whatever happened to women’s right to choose?
Above all, I want women and men to have the right to choose how they live their lives.
Isn’t that what freedom is all about? Making choices to be the best you can be?
How to stay sane in a changing world.
However, this is about what I need to do. I don’t want to get overwhelmed so easily. I become a mess of rubble. Each day seems to offers another surprise or challenge.
Therefore, my question is: How do I/we stay sane in this agitated, strange world of today?
I need to repeat myself. I get overwhelmed so easily. It‘s not good for me, my work, my family.
On the other hand, should I turn off all the news and forget about what goes on in the world?
To sum up, what can I do to keep the worries from becoming an undertow to wash me away from solid ground?
Going to pop!!
It’s time to practice emotional strength training
Don’t! I mean, don’t give up. Please hang in there. We are all tested to see how strong we are. You may have heard the saying attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt:
“We are like teabags. You never know how strong we are
until we are put in hot water.”
Firstly, I spend much of my time researching to find all the overt and subtle ways to de-stress. Overwhelm is up; calmness is down. Moreover, these days are more, not less stressful.
Let me be your cheerleader for a few minutes. In fact, let me admit that I also get overwhelmed so easily. Therefore, all my attention is on how to diminish overwhelm and limit stress.
Most importantly, I have a few tips that have helped me. Hopefully, they will help you.
How you can use your body to go from chaos to calm.
Here are two suggestions that I know work. No, they won’t change the world. However, they can help you find a better way to react to tough situations and not be so easily overwhelmed.
- Smile even when you feel like crap: As you become more tense take a few deep breaths. That’s how you start. Even if you dont want to smile, do it anyway. You can either put your lips in an upward arc or smile internally. Here’s why: the smile actually stimulates a release of endorphins to counteract stress hormones and strengthens your immune system.
- Beyond smiling, go for a belly laugh: Make sure your belly “jiggles” (easy for some and not so for others…again, do it anyway). Belly laughs enhance oxygen intake to stimulate the heart, lungs, and muscles. Here’s a joke to get you laughing:
“Did you know there’s a new restaurant in town?
It’s called KARMA. No menu. You get what you deserve!”
Shake overwhelm out of your body and mind.
I hope that smiling helped. However, if not, go to YouTube and watch some funny bits. Even if you feel lousy, give yourself a few minutes to laugh.
In a similar vein, that’s how Norman Cousins, MD, helped himself after a diagnosis from a life-threatening form of arthritis. He wrote about it in his book “An Anatomy Of An Illness.” Also, now there is ‘laughter yoga’ so, instead of flexing to do the downward dog, go for laughter.
Here are two more ways to throw overwhelm to the curb.
- Walk barefoot in a park: Do this on a sunny day. Feel the softness on the soles of your feet. Nature is vital for healing us stay healthy. In addition, get a good dose of vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin. This keeps your bones healthy as well as strengthens and stretches the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in your feet.
- Do the 7-day SANITY CHALLENGE. I put together some easy and creative ways to keep your stress down and sanity up.
The world is demanding that we learn to adapt and be resilient to thrive.
We cannot know from day to day what lands on our very full plates. It’s a time to help each other, not just cope; it’s time to help each other grow and learn more effective ways of responding to well… everything!
Smile, laugh, walk barefoot, and stay sane. You can do it. We all can do it. And reach out to touch someone (virtually, that is), so we can all get through this together.
And whenever you feel down, think about the power of that diminutive lady, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who overcame challenge after challenge in her life and made all of our lives better.
Here’s to your success,
PS. Join the Stress Mastery Facebook group with methods to stay in the safe stress zone for health and well-being. In addition, my new book will be out soon. “Invisible STRESS (It’s NOT What YOU Think!). Overcome overwhelm and stay strong no matter what happens.