• Michelle Carlen

Managing Overwhelm

Are you feeling fatigued and overwhelmed? For many of us, this year has been a series of tidal waves, we just cannot seem to catch a break. Or can we?


Managing overwhelm in the workplace and in our personal lives is an imperative skill that we all need to learn how to master to continue to move beyond the status quo. So how can we easily shift our feelings of overwhelm into something productive? Through “gratitude”. Gratitude is defined as “the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness”.


When I feel overwhelmed by a list of to-dos, deadlines, and pop-up emergencies, I immediately fight back with a simple gratitude practice. This exercise can be done in a short moment or longer if desired.


Here is a three-step exercise to managing overwhelm:


1) Stop, acknowledge you are overwhelmed. The first step in defeating overwhelm is to realize and accept that that is what you are experiencing. You cannot fix something if you don’t know what is causing the problem.


2) In that moment, think or preferably write down what you are grateful for. Focus on what is going right, not what is going wrong. What you are grateful for can be anything from a smile you received from a stranger, to how grateful you are for your loving family. Now that you determined what you are grateful for, write down a way that you can pass on a gift to someone else. It can be writing a thank you note to someone else for something they did or just that you appreciate them. The options and ideas can be endless, start by thinking small and expand from there.


3) Repeat this as often as needed. The key point here is once we start this exercise we need to employ it repeatedly and over time so that it has maximum effect. The more frequently we do this the less we will experience overwhelm.


Remember, when we employ a simple gratitude practice, we shift our energy and mindset. This puts an end to the fatigue by reframing what is important. Once we continue to practice gratitude it will eventually come naturally. Give it a try. #gratitude #bestpractices #motivation #COVID-19 #professionaldevelopment



 

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