The best way I’ve found for handling overwhelm is to take the next small step that comes to me and to let go of what happens next. I step back from the “big picture” and future outcomes and just focus on what is right in front of me right now.
No matter how chaotic things seem, if I can just keep doing this, one step after another, the overwhelm starts to subside and the stressful thinking calms down and I can see things more clearly.
An example from the “business”: For some weeks now I’ve been working on my website. It needs a serious update. There’s all sorts of stuff that would improve it and I was going round in circles, not doing much because I felt completely overwhelmed by the size of the task and all that needed to be done. Then a friend of mine commented “you’re always coaching people to just take the next step so why aren’t you doing that here? “Well, yeah”, I replied, “but this is a website. I need a strategy. Things have to be done in the right way”. Duh! Dummy alert!
Taking the next step works not because we get things under control (although it can feel like a consequence) but because our focus shifts from replaying the anxious thoughts in our head to the task at hand. Not only is this a much more enjoyable space to be in, it’s also a more creative and productive one.
A consequence of not being clear though is having to live with a rubbish website that’s even worse than when I started. However, by taking a little step here and a little step there, it’s beginning to coalesce and come together.
Perhaps the next time you pop over for a visit you’ll have a whole new browsing experience!
26 of 366 book bits