How to deal when you feel overwhelmed

Hi all,

In today’s Dr. C’s Tips article and video, we’re talking all about how to deal when you feel overwhelmed. We all have those days or moments in which we feel overwhelmed - we simply can’t deal with what is going on at the moment. So that’s why today’s article and video tackles tips to help you deal with that feeling of being overwhelmed, and we look at exactly what does feeling overwhelmed mean? So let’s go!

What does it mean when you feel overwhelmed?

In essence, when you feel overwhelmed, you have been completely overcome with emotion because you believe that you can’t handle everything that is going on at the moment. In other words, we can call it information or stress overload.

And the truth is, feeling overwhelmed can look very differently on one person than on another person. For example, one person may want to lash out and scream whereas, another may have a panic attack, and another can cry.

It’s okay to feel overwhelmed sometimes

It’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed from time to time. Just think of all of the things we have to do on a daily basis from going to school or work, to having to pay the bills, to going to the grocery store, to walking your dog or picking up your kids from school. And, in particular, the holidays are a time where we can feel extra overwhelmed because of more expenses, and just more to do’s.

tips to deal when you feel overwhelmed

First, we have to calm down and slow down. To do so, close your eyes for a moment and I want you to think of a red STOP sign. Visualize that stop sign. It’s there to help you stop and slow down. So next time you feel this way. Yell STOP in your head and think of the red stop sign.

Next, focus on a relaxation strategy that works for you. I’ve spoken before about distraction, guided imagery and deep breathing.

Finally, pull out a piece of paper and a pen. Then write down every worry and to-do you have that’s bothering you or floating around in your head. Really, write down everything. Then with the pen circle the to-do’s that have to get done. And I really mean have to get done. So if you have to pick up your kids because no one else can then yes, you have to do it. But do you really need to pick up food? Or can you order in tonight and take some time to yourself? Or can you ask your boyfriend or husband to pick some food up? Essentially we want to circle the ones we have to do, get rid of the distractions, and try delegating some of these to do’s to other people so we can feel like our day is a bit more manageable. Try doing this every day for a few weeks and then ask yourself how it’s going!

Good luck!

Dr. C

DISCLAIMER: Information being provided on this page is general in nature and is not intended to replace or serve as therapy. Should you be experiencing emotional distress or difficulties at school, work, or with relationships, it is encouraged that you contact your insurance health provider to locate a mental health professional in your area. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing thoughts of harming yourself or others at your nearest emergency room.