Feeling Overwhelmed? Here’s How to Take Control

Article Updated September 2023

Feeling overwhelmed is a normal part of life that everyone experiences. It can be triggered by several factors, including trauma, difficult situations, stress, or other personal issues. When someone feels overwhelmed, it can disrupt their daily activities and routine effectively until they’re capable of processing their emotions at a normal level again.

What It Means To Feel Overwhelmed

Being overwhelmed means you can’t function properly as you’re feeling several other emotions in the process. When you feel this, your mind and emotions just come to a pause just because you can’t process things like you normally do.

This is why you often hear anxious people overwhelmed because when you feel different varieties of intense emotions at once, you don’t know how to react and which emotion to prioritize.

10 Things To Do When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed

1. Stop doing everything at once

As mentioned earlier, it’s difficult to do anything when you’re feeling specifically overwhelmed so you need to go easy on yourself – mentally, emotionally, and physically.

Don’t do anything and just let yourself focus on breathing.

This might mean taking a break from work, from your phone, from anything that requires even an ounce of your energy.

2. Talk to a friend

Nothing releases all your confusing emotions better than just venting to someone you trust.

Phone a friend or even just text them and talk to them about what you’re feeling.

Releasing what you feel in the verbal sense will help you get more clarity and calmness with your mental and emotional health.

Choose that one friend you trust the most with your vulnerability and talk to them.

3. Ask for help

This is probably the last thing on your mind when feeling overwhelmed, especially when it’s caused by work tasks or something heavy in particular.

The burden will lighten when you ask someone for help in doing the task instead of doing it on your own.

There’s nothing wrong with asking for help. Despite the misconception, it doesn’t make you any weaker when you ask a helping hand in a certain task.

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4. Break down your tasks

This particular point is more specified to those overwhelmed because of so many tasks to do under a certain period.

You should break down your tasks when this is the case into smaller tasks that you’re more capable of managing.

Seeing a huge task can feel very overwhelming and will usually result in you not doing the task altogether.

Breaking down your task is the best strategy you can do to feel less overwhelmed.

5. Do some organizing around the house

If you’re feeling overwhelmed and you’re at home, doing chores can help you manage your emotions.

Instead of sitting still, doing chores allow you to keep yourself busy instead of focusing on the entanglement of your emotions.

As you’re attempting to process and manage through everything you’re feeling, doing chores can be the break you need for your thoughts.

6. Move your body

As mentioned in the point above, sitting still is the last thing you should do when you feel overwhelmed with emotions.

Whether it’s going to the gym, going for a run, cycling, or even as simple as yoga, make sure to move your body when you feel overwhelmed with your emotions.

It’s a great way to get out of your head and gain the clarity you need to think clearly.

7. Realize that your emotions and thoughts don’t reflect your life

It’s easy to think that being overwhelmed is a reflection of a bad life, but this feeling is temporary and it will pass eventually.

In the meantime, don’t be so harsh in yourself in associating your emotions and thoughts with your self-worth.

Being overwhelmed doesn’t mean your life is falling apart entirely. Instead, let the feeling pass and find assurance that you’ll be okay eventually.

8. Learn from your previous coping mechanisms

Reflect on the previous times you’ve felt overwhelmed and analyze how you managed to cope.

What were the activities you did?

What did you feel and how did you manage you cope?

How long does this feeling usually last?

It’s questions like these that will help you with your current emotions.

9. Try to keep your mind occupied

When you can’t find the energy to do anything at all with the activities mentioned above, that’s when you need to do something, even if it’s just as basic as standing up and walking.

The more you sit still, the worse you’ll feel about everything.

10. Read a book

Reading the words of someone else can deflect whatever it is you’re feeling and can even help you gain insight on what to do if you’re reading from the self-help genre.

It’s a great way to deal with your emotions when you’re feeling lost on what to do with them.

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Final Thoughts

n conclusion, feeling overwhelmed is a normal part of life. It’s important to find ways to help you deal with this feeling. The primary rule you should keep in mind when you feel this is to avoid dwelling on your thoughts and emotions.

No matter how easy it is, don’t believe your negative thoughts as this will encourage self-sabotaging behavior on your end. Your overwhelming thoughts and emotions don’t reflect you, and when you realize this, the easier it will be to accept having them occasionally.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can one manage feeling overwhelmed at home?

Managing feeling overwhelmed at home can be challenging, but there are some strategies that can help. Here are some tips:

  • Create a routine: Establishing a routine can help to create a sense of structure and predictability in one’s day.
  • Take breaks: Taking regular breaks can help to prevent burnout and increase productivity.
  • Practice relaxation techniques: Engaging in activities such as meditation, deep breathing, or yoga can help to reduce stress and promote relaxation.
  • Reach out for support: Talking to a friend, family member, or mental health professional can provide emotional support and helpful coping strategies.

What are some ways to cope with feeling overwhelmed and anxious?

Coping with feeling overwhelmed and anxious can be challenging, but there are some strategies that can help. Here are some tips:

  • Practice self-care: Engage in activities that promote physical and emotional well-being, such as exercise, healthy eating, and getting enough sleep.
  • Challenge negative thoughts: Try to identify and challenge negative thoughts that may be contributing to feelings of overwhelm and anxiety.
  • Use relaxation techniques: Engage in activities that promote relaxation, such as deep breathing, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation.
  • Seek professional help: Consider talking to a mental health professional if feelings of overwhelm and anxiety persist.

How can one motivate oneself when feeling overwhelmed?

Motivating oneself when feeling overwhelmed can be challenging, but there are some strategies that can help. Here are some tips:

  • Break tasks down: Breaking tasks down into smaller, more manageable steps can help to reduce feelings of overwhelm and increase motivation.
  • Set goals: Setting specific, achievable goals can help to provide direction and motivation.
  • Use positive self-talk: Encouraging oneself with positive self-talk can help to boost motivation and reduce feelings of overwhelm.
  • Take action: Taking action, even if it’s just a small step, can help to build momentum and increase motivation.

What are some synonyms for feeling overwhelmed?

There are several synonyms for feeling overwhelmed, including:

  • Burdened
  • Overloaded
  • Stressed
  • Swamped
  • Flooded
  • Overworked
  • Exhausted

What does it feel like to be overwhelmed?

Feeling overwhelmed can manifest in different ways for different people, but common symptoms include:

  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Feeling irritable or moody
  • Physical symptoms such as headaches, muscle tension, or stomach pain
  • Racing thoughts or feeling like one’s mind is going blank
  • Avoiding tasks or responsibilities
  • Feeling like one is in a constant state of stress or anxiety

How can one deal with the feeling of being overwhelmed and depressed?

Dealing with the feeling of being overwhelmed and depressed can be challenging, but there are some strategies that can help. Here are some tips:

  • Seek professional help: Talking to a mental health professional can provide support and helpful coping strategies.
  • Practice self-care: Engage in activities that promote physical and emotional well-being, such as exercise, healthy eating, and getting enough sleep.
  • Challenge negative thoughts: Try to identify and challenge negative thoughts that may be contributing to feelings of overwhelm and depression.
  • Connect with others: Talking to friends or family members can provide emotional support and help to combat feelings of isolation.

Rebecca

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