What is overwhelm?
Overwhelm is the feeling that results from asking ourselves lots of questions without consciously answering them. When we don't answer consciously, our lower brain answers for us. Our lower brain is designed to focus on the negative and the dangerous. So, we're asking ourselves lots of questions and answering them negatively, beneath our awareness. When our questions go unanswered, they just keep looping, over and over. Question -> Unanswered consciously -> Answered negatively by our lower brain beneath our awareness -> Feel terrible -> Repeat. The more they loop, the worse we feel. Overwhelm also shuts us down. We don't take action from overwhelm. It's why overwhelm feels awful and fruitless and why we stay stuck.
I thought you said I was supposed to sit with my emotions and allow them? With positive and negative emotions, yes. With indulgent emotions like overwhelm, no. Why? Because they're unnecessary, they keep us stuck, they don't have anything to teach us. Confusion, self-pity, and worry are three other very common indulgent emotions. They allow us to stay safe instead of making a decision and taking action.
How do I get out of overwhelm then?
- Write down all of the questions and statements that are coming into your mind. Keep going until you feel like you've gotten everything out.
- Go back through and write down your answer to every single question.
- From that place, make a plan. Decide what you're going to do.
- Avoid the temptation to delay making a decision. Living in indecision drains your energy. You spend all of your time and brain power weighing the options.
- Take action from your decisions.
- Repeat as necessary.
If you want help with this process or want to learn more about managing your mind, schedule a free consultation! Making the decision to move forward with coaching is the very first step in creating positive, lasting change in your life.