Feeling Overwhelmed?

What does being overwhelmed look like to you?  Perhaps it is a never ending to do list, too much work, not enough time to play, familial obligations, emotional exhaustion, or major life transitions that are throwing us out of our normal routine.  Here are some tips on how to attempt to address those feelings of being overwhelmed.

  1. Look at what has to get done vs. what you’d like to get done.  Think about what matters most.
  2. Set small goals and steps to achieve those goals.
  3. Consider what you have said yes to.  Is it possible to assign a task to someone else?  What are the consequences of not meeting what you’ve said yes to?  Perhaps there’s some leeway in asking for an extension to get something done?
  4. Cut out distractions from social events that feel more like obligations rather than fun and time spent on social media, TV, or the internet.
  5. Find some quiet time to do something you love, time to relax, rest, think and feel.
  6. Nurture those relationships that are most meaningful to you.  Find time to share what’s going on in your heart and mind.
  7. Focus on what’s going well in your life.

Simplify Your Life: How do you do that?

Yesterday I had a conversation with someone who asked, “Why are things so complicated?”  While I wasn’t going to answer this question for this person, I sit here this morning thinking about how as humans, we often complicate matters.  We do this as means to distract ourselves from other things we’d rather not look at, for the pleasure of figuring something out haphazardly,  we are overwhelmed by the series of latest events – so wrapped up in the emotions that we keeping tying ourselves down with more fix it ideas that really only serve to bandaid one pin prick.

Even thinking about this question this morning I have a list of ideas too long, that I am overwhelmed by the advice of others (actually myself in most circumstances).  So I am going to pick 3 things, to simplify.  Take it or leave it, actually don’t take it if it doesn’t simplify!

Many people feel stressed and overwhelmed because they are ‘overconnected,'” says Debra A. Dinnoncenzo, president of ALLearnatives.  This means that there are now so many ways to connect and contact one another (phone, text, email, chat messages, forums, intercoms, walkie talkies, doorbells, cars, bikes, meetings…) that we forget to disconnect.  I mean, imagine when all we had was a messenger to send a note?  (idea sparked by this article)

Cat Li Stevenson comments, “We don’t have to reject all consumerism, move to a remote island, or follow a strict Zen routine in order to experience the inner peace that comes with simple living.”  There are very good ways to get ride of the extras – which could include adding more errands today when I need to focus on leaving town, or letting the weeds grow a bit more (they will still be there tomorrow), or sending out one more email (can’t it wait?).

Danny, who started simplifying life 2 years ago, has a great blog that uses words and simple images in reflecting on the journey of simplifying.  Particularly I liked the statement, “Simplifying has taught me that I already have what I need.”