At one time or another, everyone can find themselves feeling overwhelmed with life.
You’ve got a million things on your plate, bills are due, work is crazy (as always) and sometimes it all becomes a bit much – you’re feeling tired, exhausted, and just overwhelmed. What do you do when the world seems to be closing in on you? How can you relax and keep going despite those draining responsibilities and problems in your life?
I’ve been wondering the same because lately, I’ve been dealing with so many issues that I thought I will go crazy (and anxiety just loves to make us believe that!). I don’t want this article to be a pity-drama-pleasebesorryforme type of article, so I will skip the details. But ultimately, the never-ending stress forced me to stop and ask myself:
“Wait, am I forgetting to actually take care of MYSELF as well? Am I even doing anything to help myself at this difficult time? Am I allowing myself to take a break and release all the tension that’s accumulating all the time?”
Of course, the answer was negative because basically EVERYTHING felt more important… Until my health gave in and I was forced to finally stop and take a break from everything (and guess what, the world didn’t end without me). If you asked the same questions yourself and the answer is “no”, it’s time for you to get back to the basics of essential physical and mental self-care. I don’t want you to end up like me, so I rounded up this helpful list of things to do when you’re feeling overwhelmed with life.
Every time I practiced these in the past, I always felt wonderful and battled all the negative times easily. This time, I’m taking my lesson and I hope you can learn from my mistakes as well. Here are some tips to help you cope when you’re feeling overwhelmed with life – let’s get your sanity back!
1. Take a time out regularly
When you’re feeling overwhelmed with life, it’s simply a must to take time for yourself! Set reminders a few times a day to get away from what you’re doing completely. Spend at least 20-30 minutes, or (if you can) an hour or two away from work. Meditate, take a long relaxing shower, go for a walk in the fresh air, or even watch a silly comedy. As long as you’re regularly, physically away from your problems, you’re allowing your body to relax and put things back into perspective.
Exercise is one of the most powerful tools to cope with feeling overwhelmed with life – and it can even work as a mood-booster and pain-killer.
One of the most important things I’ve learned from my therapist is those simple exercise activities like brisk walking, and a jog (for those who can) release endorphins into your bloodstream and… Believe me, when you’re feeling overwhelmed, you want to have as many of these as possible, especially in times of stress.
So even if you don’t want to, go for that walk, a run, or hit the gym or swimming pool. Find some way to get your body moving so that you can calm down, feel better, and spend some time focusing on something other than your problems.
3. Practice deep breathing
Deep breathing is another great way to relax and it’s not just a hoax – it’s proven scientifically and practiced by millions of anxious souls who struggle with worry, anxiety, panic attacks, and other stress-related outcomes.
When you’re feeling overwhelmed with life, try to breathe deeply in and out for a few minutes and try not to think about anything, except for how your breath feels going into your body. Along with this, you can also learn how to formally meditate and incorporate it into your life. Also, there’s no need to invent a bicycle yourself when it comes to meditation because you can find a lot of guided meditations on Youtube (they will tell you how to do it right).
4. Be thankful for the good things
Anyone who is reading this probably has a lot to feel thankful for. While reading articles online might not sound like a luxury, for a lot of people it would be. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the life you have, take a few minutes to sit down and go over everything you have to feel thankful for. This article can really help: How To Be Grateful When Life Gets Hard
5. Call a friend
Talking to a close friend or relative will always make you feel better about whatever is going on in your life, especially when you’re feeling overwhelmed with life. Call one of your friends (or even your mom if you’re in a good relationship) and catch up with them. You don’t even have to speak about the problems you’re dealing with right now, but if you feel like it, letting some of the emotions out can help you feel lighter. Talking to a spouse or significant other can also be a big help.
6. Delegate your tasks
The reality is that you can’t do everything yourself… And you shouldn’t feel that you have to. Two hands are better than one so share as much as possible with your co-workers, family, or friends, depending on the task load.
7. Establish a sleep regime
It’s so easy to wreak total havoc on our sleeping habits when things get stressful! However, having a proper sleep regime will help you to stay well. I know, it’s not easy to fall asleep, sleep well, and get proper rest when you’re stressed, so I’ve already shared a ton of good tips that help you to get good sleep no matter what:
8. Create helpful to-do lists
Instead of worrying about what has to be done, create to-do lists. This way, you’ll have a step-by-step plan for getting things accomplished – a simple handwritten guide goes a long way when you’re feeling overwhelmed already!
With a list hand, every task that you check off takes you one step closer to completion + your mood improves since you continuously accomplish something. I know it may feel unpleasant to do them at the beginning, but you will feel a lot better when you have them!
9. Clean up some clutter
The environment you live or work in can affect your mood and stress you out. On the other hand, cleaning at least a little bit makes most people feel a little better. So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed with life, bringing some order and tidiness into it might be a great idea.
You don’t have to go on a full organize + declutter + clean mode, but cleaning up a little will definitely help. Do this and you’re bound to feel less overwhelmed and a lot more calm – in fact, you might even feel like a brand new person who’s ready to face anything!
10. Ultimately, don’t take things too seriously
I know, sometimes even little things look extremely important… But life isn’t meant to be taken too seriously. No matter what problems you have:
- they are probably not AS serious as you think they are;
- they probably have multiple solutions;
- Even if they don’t have solutions, they probably have a lot of ways to improve the situation and make it a little better.
… And even if your life collapses entirely and you have a nervous breakdown – it really doesn’t matter. Life will go on, time will pass, your worry will subside (our bodies are made in such a way that it will ALWAYS start to subside, it’s physically impossible to stay in a high-anxiety mode forever), you will recover and one day you’ll look back on things and laugh. I’ve done this so many times, you can’t even imagine, and trust me, I’m really not a superhuman. I’m just a girl like you.
You can do this, just make sure to take care of yourself. I hope these tips will help you, and if you’re feeling overwhelmed with life right now, implementing a few of them can make you feel like a whole new person in a few days!
P. S. There’s always an option to talk to a therapist if you’re feeling overwhelmed for too long… A professional can help you find new ways of thinking and see your problems in a more helpful light. It’s never a shame to help yourself or care for your mental health.
P. S. Scroll down below for more self-help tips!