Are you familiar with that sickly feeling of anxiety when you’ve got a long list of urgent things to do and you don’t know where to start, so overwhelm and stress kick in?
It hit me like a wave yesterday afternoon as I was sat at my computer with a list of actions to complete. All of which seemed urgent and important and none of which could be done quickly.
The panicky feeling set in and I froze unable to decide what to turn my attention to first. Eventually, I gave up and got rid of my uncomfortable feelings temporarily with some chocolate (not a coping method I’d recommend!)
It did at least give me a break to think about how I could manage my overwhelm and stress more effectively.
If I was coaching you I’d recommend trying these 6 ways.
- Don’t fight your anxiety – Has fighting your feelings of overwhelm and stress ever helped you? It’s unlikely, you’d probably just boost your feelings instead. Try taking a moment to stop and be still. It may feel counterintuitive but it allows you to ride out the wave of anxiety instead.
- Take a physical break – Just as I did, remove yourself briefly from the physical situation your in. This will break your pattern of stressful thoughts and allow fresh thinking to come in
- Don’t multitask – You might think you’re doing well at writing an email while talking on the phone or catching up on your favourite tv show whilst writing a report. But it just means you’re brain is flitting from one task to another, draining your energy and doing both things badly.
- Calm breathing – Here’s a video of a calming breath exercise that you can try
- One bite at a time – I find it easier to break an overwhelming task down to just the first step (or bite). It then feels manageable and having achieved it I feel calmer and positive
- Focus on the bigger picture – This is a specific busy period but it will pass and will it really be that awful if you don’t complete your to-do list?
If you’re finding yourself regularly in this feeling of overwhelm and stress particularly at work. Then I’d love to tell you about some of my other free resources. Just book a free chat with me at www.speakwithjo.com
Have a calm and relaxed week.