What to Do When You Feel Overwhelmed

We’ve all been there to some degree. Too many tasks on your plate at once can make you feel like the sky is falling, that the world is about to end and there’s nothing you can do to stop it. But there’s good news: the world will not end, and you will come out on the other side.

So how can you get a better handle on those feelings in a way that will make your day a little more manageable? These are a few ideas you can try:

Walk Away

Becoming overwhelmed while you’re in the middle of a task can make it hard to focus, which may only serve to frustrate you more. If you can, try to walk away and collect yourself. Even if it’s only a five or ten-minute break for a drink of water or a breath of fresh air, those few moments can help you calm down and give you time to think about your next move.

Break it Down

If you’ve ever had too many problems going on at one time, you most likely know how challenging it can be to think of solutions. This is because little things add up, and eventually a dozen minor inconveniences start to look like one big mess. Now is the time to take step back and break everything down into individual tasks. Prioritize the most important ones and leave the ones that can wait until later, and hopefully your day will start to look a little bit less daunting.

Judge for Effort, Not Perfection

There are times in life when certain careers or circumstances leave little room for error. However, in general you can usually expect that perfection is not a requirement for making it through the day. Too many of us spend our lives afraid to make mistakes, believing their worth rests on their success. But while it’s important to chase your goals, it’s okay to be proud of yourself for giving it your all, even if the result your achieved was different from the one you wanted. There’s no set standard for success that you have to follow.

It Won’t Last Forever

Sometimes when we feel overwhelmed, it can seem like that feeling will last forever. But the truth is that feelings and situations come and go. You’ll get through this and keep moving forward like you have in the past. Just look at how far you’ve come already — that shows you can make it through today, tomorrow, and the next.

These are just four simple concepts to keep in mind the next time you feel overwhelmed. While they may not completely solve the problem, they can help give you perspective and even guide you through some of the challenging moments. Remember: every step forward matters, and even if it doesn’t always feel like it, you’re doing great.

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