by Nick Marshall
One minute you’re living your best life, with a packed social calendar and plenty of plans. The next, you find yourself tired, irritable and struggling to focus on the simplest of tasks. What happened? You became overwhelmed by an imbalance between what’s possible and what’s manageable. The culprit can be the steady accumulation of everyday stresses or sudden events like work trouble or relationship issues. Whatever the cause, it is possible to tame the effects. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take back control with these six strategies.
1. Recognize the Signs
A first-of-its-kind study conducted 2016 revealed that a third of all Americans (that’s over 100 million people) don’t get the seven hours of sleep recommended by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. And with the average American works 44 hours a week, at some point, something has to give. If your work/life balance puts you at risk of being overwhelmed, the sooner you can admit you’re swamped, the better positioned you are to work on a solution. It might seem obvious, but it’s often hard to slow down enough to recognize your body and mind need extra. By taking that moment for yourself you can actively start prioritizing your wellness.
2. Talk It Out
We’re increasingly bombarded with pressure to be super productive, always on, and “crushing” every task, no matter how mundane. Fear of failure makes it hard to put up a hand and raise an objection if that’s not comfortable. Pushing yourself to be first shouldn’t mean taking care of yourself last. If you’re feeling out of your depth you can always get support by talking to a therapist, medical professional or counselor.
3. Take a Mindful Approach
Setting goals for yourself can make you more effective, but not when it’s at the expense of reality. There will always be aspects of our lives that we have no control over. As long as you fear uncertainty, the stress of worrying about a negative outcome can stifle your well-being. Meditation and mindfulness can help you reconnect with the moment and accept uncertainty. Start with simple breathing exercises to focus your mind, and then gradually allow yourself the luxury of uncertainty.
4. Slow Down and Disconnect
The average worker in the U.S. receives 46 push notifications and over 100 emails per day. See the connection? Your smartphone might be a source of entertainment and escape, but it’s also relentless when it comes to dominating your attention. Be brave enough to unplug, log off and clear your calendar for some “me” time. Our brains are not meant to process large amounts of information for extended periods. In fact, our survival as a species has relied on our ability to block out unnecessary distractions. Get back to nature by disconnecting from your devices and focusing on one task at a time.
5. Exercise to Beat Stress
When your mind is stressed, cortisol levels build up in your body, putting you on high alert. At the same time, “good mood” serotonin levels become depleted. The easiest way to restore the balance is through aerobic exercise, which gets the circulation pumping and floods the body with mood-enhancing hormones. You don’t have to join a gym immediately. Even a brisk walk or 10 to 15 minutes of stretching will help you flush out anxiety and stress, leaving you feeling refreshed and invigorated.
6. Boost Your System
When you allow stress to build up in your body, you can’t perform at your best level. One way to get back to balance is to support your body’s endocannabinoid system - which regulates sleep, mood, appetite and memory. You can do this naturally with CBD, which positively interacts with the endocannabinoid system Just a couple of our FOCL CBD Drops, for an instant dose of chill to combat the jitters. Incorporate them to your daily wellness routine by adding a few drops to your morning smoothie or pre-bedtime tea.
We all know the feelings that come along with being overwhelmed are no joke, so there’s no shame in taking some time out to practice a little bit of self-care. The techniques we’ve outlined above are all ways to help reduce feelings of stress, and work best when you establish them as proactive habits for a healthier lifestyle.