10 Ways To Deal With Overwhelm

Published by Hayley Gillard on

Overwhelm is that horrible feeling when you are so stressed you are numb.


You’re forgetful, you can’t concentrate, you don’t feel connected to anyone or yourself.


You snap. You cry. But you feel like you can’t do anything about it either.


Sometimes you know why you’re overwhelmed, sometimes you don’t.


Sometimes it is just everything all built up together that is overwhelming you.


If you’re stressed out and overwhelmed right now you’ve come to the right place.


You can get back in control of how you feel and you can manage your stress so it doesn’t happen again.


You can’t show up properly in your business when you’re overwhelmed. You lose your creativity, don’t want to talk to clients… even question whether you’re cut out for all this entrepreneurial stuff. You don’t make sales. You worry about money. You think about getting a job. I hear you.


Here’s a checklist you can follow immediately to help you.



1. Clear your head – get everything out on paper. Empty your brain of everything on your to-do list – work and personal life. Just keep going until it’s all out. This may make you feel sick because you see how much you have to do but getting it out frees up some brain capacity and means you can then objectively sort it all out.


2. Prioritise – work out what’s most important right now and what’s just clogging up your brain airwaves. Use a traffic light system to grade the importance of each task or put them in number order. Be strict though… you may want to do something but is it really urgent?


3. Stop – do whatever you need to do to create some space RIGHT NOW. Get a babysitter, take a sick day, clear your diary, send the kids on a play date… Stop what you are doing. You are going in circles and this will
create a pause and allow space to reset. You’ve emptied your head so you can forget what you need to do until tomorrow. Pushing through will make you WORSE not better.


4. Reframe stress – stress is ok, we need stress to survive. You are already reading this and therefore already acknowledging you’d like to change something. You’ve already jumped the first hurdle. Know it is ok to feel stress and know it is ok because you are now helping yourself deal with it. Stress is your body’s survival mechanism to help you work more effectively. Think about it like that and breathe into it.


5. Schedule – use a calendar or daily planner (or even just a scrap piece of paper like I do!) to schedule your day. This helps you realistically look at to your to do list and work out if you’re being totally unreasonable with yourself about how much you can fit in! Remember to schedule in breaks. You’re the boss – you’d never expect an employee to not take a lunch break!


6. Be kind to yourself – Remember you set up your own business to gain more freedom, not feel like you’re handcuffed. You can choose your hours. You can work smarter not harder. There’s no boss telling you, you still need to be sat at your desk. Get up, move! Give yourself permission to create freedom!


7. Take time out – Forcing ourselves to work through just makes things worse. The best thing you can actually do is to take some time off to rest and recuperate. Even an hour will allow you a bit of headspace. Factoring this in to your weekly routine is even better.


8. Try to understand the underlying cause – Are you overworked? Do you have unrealistic deadlines? Is your mind-set or self-confidence getting in the way? Are you having relationship troubles? Is your desk cluttered? Is it all of the above?! Working out some of the causes gives us a good starting point to try and tackle them. Remember self-awareness is the basis of all my confidence work!


9.Take action – After you’ve rested and listened to your body, do one thing every day to make your life easier. Could it be clearing your desk, could it be deleting 10 emails, unsubscribing from junk mail, asking for help with chores, batch making dinner? Maybe you need some coaching (If you do – click here!) or to do one of my programmes (Click Here For My How to Be Confident Course). Just do SOMETHING!


10.Social interaction – Ensure you have people around you who make you feel good. Call an old friend who makes your laugh, go for coffee with your sister, chat to your online buddies. Come in and tell us how you’re feeling in Self-Belief School. Make sure you are interacting with people and having a good time. Jim Rohn said: “We are the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with”. Are you spending time with people who boost your confidence? If not, take action!


Promise me something… even if you’ve read through that list and skimmed through it – go back and just choose ONE thing to make a start on. Ensure this be the reflection you needed to make a change and now go and take some action!



The trick with all of this is preventing overwhelm happening again. We need stress, some stress is healthy but too much stress can lead to burn out (and lots of other health problems). We can learn to improve our wellbeing in lots of ways but the most important is to start looking after ourselves, our time, our boundaries and our mindset. Burn out is so often caused by putting everyone and everything else first and neglecting yourself. You can’t grow a successful business if you are burnt out so make a commitment right now to start looking after yourself.


If you think you may need to create better boundaries, you’ll love my blog here.
And if you want to take some quick fire action on your overwhelm right now with me as your mentor you’ll love my Overwhelm Masterclass here.


For tips and advice about things like this topic, and so much more, I’d love you to join us in Self-Belief School – my free Facebook community for female entrepreneurs. We have weekly live training about subjects to improve your mindset (and therefore your business success).


To take the next step in your confidence journey make sure you’ve downloaded my free masterclass: from self-doubt to success. It’s packed with tips for recognising if your mindset is holding you back, and includes a bonus mini coaching session!

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