I’ve had that horrid, “so much to do, so little time” feeling for a while now and I know I am no more over-worked, etc than most people plus I also don’t have the added stress and strain of brining up a child or two, so why do I keep feeling so overwhelmed?
If I look at the external reasons it’s obvious why I feel overwhelmed; I have a stressful job with several deadlines and all of them seem to be NOW. I am in the final year of my part-time MA and want to get going on my dissertation; I have committed to changing my life in the long term and as a result have started this blog (so its all the blog’s fault…), I want to do more hobby like things, I want to see my friends, I want to see my family and I am planning a wedding, I have to keep the flat clean and on it goes… I’m sure many of you feel the same or have similar external pressures to deal with.
Ok, so thats the external things pretty much listed, blamed and shamed! Do I feel better for that? Not really.
So I searched online, how to get rid of feeling overwhelmed? Up came several articles “Five ways to stop the overwhelm”, ‘4 ways to find calm when overwhelmed’, ‘3 ways to find quiet when overwhelmed.’ So which is it, five ways, 4, 3?
I realised that the reason I feel overwhelmed is because of my thoughts. Yes I can go into nature (thats in the 3 tips – not sure there is much nature to find in London, but hey!), or I can find five minutes to meditate (staring blankly at my screen doesn’t count), I can even get more present with myself, breathe deeply, list everything I have to do (see above), list how awesome I am, list all the things I have achieved in the past, tackle each thing in bite-sized pieces, breathe some more, shrug my shoulders, do some press-ups, scream into a pillow, cry, run, yes I can do all of those things, but ultimately the thing that keeps me wedded to the overwhelm are my thoughts.
I’ve been reading a lot about the Three Principles, Universe (Mind), Consciousness and Thought, and the theory, or revelation experienced by Syd Banks, that our lives are shaped by our thoughts, how we respond to them and how as a result of being wedded to our external lives instead of paying attention to our internal power, we are further removed from the greater support that is Mind or the Universal Energy. It’s a steep learning curve, and while the theory all makes sense, practicing it is another thing altogether. Hence the overwhelm.
Here was I thinking about why I am overwhelmed, externalising the cause when all along I was ignoring everything I have read about how we shape our own lives via the Three Principles: STOP THINKING!
But here’s the thing, stopping thinking is not as easy as it sounds. Have you ever tried to stop thinking? I can stop thinking for a short period of time, while meditating say. And actually of all the suggestions from the plethora of lists on how to overcome the overwhelm, meditation is a very good tip. But it only works for a short while and needs regular time and space. When you are stuck in the spiral of overwhelm, time is exactly what you feel you don’t have! Plus when you stop meditating those pesky thoughts just come back. Little buggers.
You might have noticed I’ve bolded the word feel and feeling throughout. That’s because feelings come from one source: thoughts.
Feelings are a good indicator of whether your thoughts are good or bad, positive or negative, supportive or frankly downright discouraging. If you feel down, upset, negative in anyway you can be absolutely certain that a thought has caused that feeling in response to an external event, or just for the hell of it.
Have you ever listened to yourself? Try it. All sorts of thoughts rampage through your head. Some you pay little or no notice to, you have zero awareness of them and guess what, they tend not to hang around. Others catch your attention (normally the negative ones) and you notice, you listen to them, you pay attention to them and give them your awareness, you let them take you on a journey that might not end up where you want to be. They seep into your consciousness and before you know it they are part of your reality. Little buggers.
What would happen if you chose not to pay those thoughts any attention? The annoying ones, you know the ones that keep repeating, ‘I have no time’, ‘I feel so tired’, ‘Im never going to get that done’, ‘I wish I had more time, more money, more space, less work, fewer things to do, less pressure from friends/family/cats/elves.’ Yup, they wouldn’t hang around just like those other thoughts that popped up and were ignored.
So here is my list on how to overcome feeling overwhelmed:
Listen to yourself… and pay no attention to the thoughts that keep banging on about being overwhelmed
#thoughtsbecomethings, #powerofthought, #meditation, #sydbanks, #threeprinciples, #lawofattraction, #overwhelmed