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​​6 Tips to Help You Say Goodbye to Feeling Overwhelmed When you have a lot going on, it’s easy to feel unsettled. You frantically try to complete tasks in what can only be described as a whack-a-mole approach. The most...

By Angela Ruth

This story originally appeared on Calendar

When you have a lot going on, it’s easy to feel unsettled. You frantically try to complete tasks in what can only be described as a whack-a-mole approach. The most pressing to-do becomes the priority; before you know it, you’re jumping to the next thing. This is unsustainable for long periods, leading to a dreaded feeling of overwhelm.

That doesn’t mean you have to accept this state of living, though. With a bit of effort and some strategies for managing your responsibilities, you can handle everything. Here are a few to start with.

1. Get Organized

While your feelings of being overextended are likely from having too much on your plate, being disorganized won’t help. You’re not confident about what is due and when. Planning is impossible because you’re cramming in last-minute priorities. It’s a mess. That’s why putting the power of organization to use is so crucial.

Start by wading through your responsibilities with time restraints. An assignment due this week takes precedence over something evergreen, for example. Go through the rest of your to-do list with the same mindset until you’ve got it all laid out. Although it takes time (and is admittedly intimidating), knowing all you must do is empowering. You’re then able to prioritize, plan, and execute without feeling so overworked.

Looking for an organization boost? Turn to your favorite calendar to schedule away. The most popular options — Google Calendar, Microsoft Calendar, and Calendar — can enhance your organizational strategy. From color coding and AI integrations to time blocks and reminders, an in-depth calendar is your best bet for staying organized. From there, it’s just about keeping up good habits.

2. Break Down Work

If you have a big project, thinking through every component is anxiety-inducing. You’re looking at it as a whole, which may even feel impossible. There’s so much work to be done. That’s why breaking down your work is so critical.

Take a home renovation project, for example. If you’re redoing your kitchen, knocking down walls, removing floors, and installing new counters, it’s a lot. But if you take time to break it down into more manageable milestones, it won’t feel like quite as much. Focus on taking out walls before removing floors and so on. While you’re doing the same amount of work at the end of the day, you can better appreciate your progress.

Apply the same mentality to help balance work and home projects you have going on. Breaking down a big essay at work or a school assignment establishes organization and can keep you on track. If you miss a step, you can adjust your plans. You can also work ahead if time allows, giving you more flexibility. When you confidently know how much work you’ve done toward a goal, you’re less likely to be overwhelmed.

3. Step Away

When you start to feel stressed, you may be inclined to push through and try to be more productive. You’re operating under the assumption that continuing to work is what will get you through. However, the opposite may be true. Sometimes, taking time off can boost productivity and is just what you need to avoid feeling underwater.

Stepping away from your miles-long to-do list isn’t easy. However, a few distinct benefits make it the perfect defense against feeling overwhelmed. For one, you allow yourself to breathe without pouring over the details. The chores, work, or whatever you must do becomes more distant. That provides the space for recenter and refocus to accomplish the tasks.

Another perk is you can contextualize what you’re doing. Being in nature, playing with a pet or child, or reading a book can all immerse you in the here and now. That shifts your mindset and makes the cause of your stress feel ever so slightly smaller. Then, when you’re ready, you can dive back in with a clear mind, prepared for whatever is next.

4. Learn Your Productivity Style

Have you ever talked with a friend and admired their work habits? Maybe they get up before the sun, hit the gym, shower, and eat breakfast before you’ve even hit snooze. Perhaps they’re working through lunch because they’re on a roll, completely forgetting about meals. Whatever their style is, it may feel shockingly different than yours. That’s because everyone has a unique productivity routine.

The circumstances that will breed productivity for one person may not be the same for another. As such, figuring out your style can be a great way to avoid feeling overwhelmed. Start by considering when your motivation is at its highest during the day. Take note if you wake up with plenty of energy but hit an afternoon slump. Or if you struggle to keep your eyes open past dinner but thrive mid-morning, keep that in mind.

Then, consider the factors that make you most productive during that time. Pour over if you’re eating a sure thing, getting a workout in, or if it’s simply inherent. Replicate those efforts and plan your days around your productivity time and style as best you can. You’ll get more done when it best suits you, leaving less to feel stressed about.

5. Seek Therapy

Life is overwhelming. Most people are balancing a combination of school, work, fitness, a social life, and hobbies — that’s not even an exhaustive list. It’s no wonder it weighs on you. Luckily, therapy can help you cope.

Providing strategies for navigating stress, anxiety, and general overwhelmed feelings, therapy is an outlet. You can talk with a trained professional who can validate your experiences and help you navigate your responsibilities. Even better, they can advise on what steps to take when you feel like it’s all becoming too much.

Explore different styles of therapy to find the right one for you. One-on-one talk therapy is great if you’re more private or hoping to dive in on personal topics. Group therapy could be a solution if connecting with others who are experiencing something similar is important to you. Once you find the right medium, all you have to do is talk. After a while, with new strategies in tow, life will become a bit more manageable.

6. Ask for Help

A key part of your identity might be that you’re a go-to leader. When problems arise at home or work, you’re the first to come to the rescue. While being reliable is a great trait, it can also contribute to feeling overwhelmed. So, even if you’re a rockstar at work and a super parent at home, it’s OK to ask for help.

Of course, this is much easier said than done. When you pride yourself on being able to manage an extensive list of responsibilities, getting help isn’t your go-to. However, it’s necessary to keep yourself from falling apart. If this is a relatable struggle, try easing your way into it. Ask for help one time on something small, like a household chore.

Then, once that becomes comfortable, build upon it. Delegate at work so your workload is more palatable, and get accustomed to saying “no.” These aren’t easy steps to take, but if you’re constantly on the brink of feeling overwhelmed, reaching out for help may be the solution you’re looking for.

Give Yourself Grace

Will you be perfect and never feel overwhelmed? Unfortunately, no. However, doing your best to incorporate stress-reducing strategies can make life feel less challenging, which is worthwhile in itself.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Andrea Piacquadio; Pexels

The post ​​6 Tips to Help You Say Goodbye to Feeling Overwhelmed appeared first on Calendar.

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