What to Do When You’re on Overload
You know that feeling when your brain feels full.
When you can’t fit one more piece of information inside your head.
Even the weather report makes you want to cover your ears and say “la-la-la” repeatedly.
Fortunately, these times pass. But how do we manage when we’re in the middle of a crunch period?
In addition to the usual good advice, e.g., exercise, meditation, sleep, here are some quickie tips:
· Journal. Make two columns. Label the left side “On One Hand” and label the right side “But on the Other Hand.” In the left column write one area of your stress, e.g., “project deadline looming and I’m freaking out.” Then write a response in the right column, e.g., “I’ve never missed a deadline and I won’t this time, either.” This exercise helps your brain see a bigger, more balanced picture, helping to reduce your anxiety.
· Dance. Dancing through even one song makes us feel better because we’re exercising off stress while sending feel good chemicals to our brains. I’ve been known to say, “Alexa, play dance music.” She has great taste!
· Call a good friend. Tell her how you’re feeling and that you need her to tell you it will all be ok. That’s exactly what she’ll do and, because she knows you well, she’ll mean it. Validation and feeling heard are reassuring.
· Walk outside. Getting out of our built environment shifts our thinking and calms us down. Just a few minutes walking around the block is helpful. (Rushing to your car doesn’t count!)
Remember, time passes and crunches end.