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Why You’re Overwhelmed & 5 Ways To Deal With It

I came to the realization a handful of months ago that I am very, very susceptible to overwhelm.  I have a tendency to take on too much at once, my time management tends to suck, and I have a need to do everything all at once.  I’ve realized that, for me, the need to do everything at once is because I don’t want to forget something that I wanted to do.  I also get so excited about something that I need to start it right away even if I’m still in the middle of something else that’s going to conflict.  My biggest area of overwhelm also comes in the form of taking classes.  I tend to sign up for everything that comes my way that excites me and before I know it I’m doing 20 things at once.

This is the Overwhelm Gremlin and you need to know how to deal with it before it devours you and your wild, soulful dreams!
Overwhelm ends up causing problems in all kinds of ways.

[list type=”checkmark”] [li]increased stress[/li] [li]sleeplessness[/li] [li]confusion[/li] [li]crankiness[/li] [li]Ok, let’s just admit it…bitchiness[/li] [/list]

And if you’re a magickal person overwhelm gets in the way of meditation, magick, manifestation, and divination.  Overwhelm clouds your thinking and makes it hard to focus and direct energy or even really know what it is that you need to truly be working on.

For me I find overwhelm becomes especially problematic with business and creative projects.  It doesn’t take much for me to suddenly find that I’m buried under a self-created pile of work.

I literally end up with piles of books, binders, and papers around my desk and my chair to the point where I can’t get out and I have to step over piles of things to get away.

Because of all of this and because my brain tends to run at a speed that I can’t usually keep up with, I had to start looking at ways to deal with overwhelm the minute that it starts to make itself known.  The only thing that is worse than overwhelm is not dealing with overwhelm.  

One of many piles of books that clutter the floor of my office. I want to read them…I’m planning to read them…when I’m not so overwhelmed with work!

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5 Ways to Deal with Overwhelm When It Hits

[fontpress type=”webfonts” name=”Happy Monkey” size=”18px” lh=”20px” color=”#8400D1″]1.  Don’t Wait, Get Going![/fontpress] When overwhelm happens it tends to be a result of not actually doing anything.  We wait and wait for the stars to align or for everything in our lives to open up or create the perfect path for us to do whatever it is that we want to do.  All we end up with is a long list of “should’ve, would’ve, could’ve” at the end of the day.  And the more of those we come up with the bigger the pile gets and the deeper we slip into overwhelm.
[sws_green_box box_size=”550″]

Perfection is an illusion. We create the idea of perfection.

NOW is the perfect time because you’re here, alive, thinking and breathing!![/sws_green_box]

 Creating the list of baby steps to get to the big goals and big dreams and know that any little step, any little thing you can cross off your list is getting you closer to that big dream!  No step is too small!!

[fontpress type=”webfonts” name=”Happy Monkey” size=”18px” lh=”20px” color=”#8400D1″]2. Write It Out & Prioritize![/fontpress] Don’t try and trust that you’re going to remember everything that you should do, want to do, and dream of doing.  And when you write it down and commit it to paper it helps to make things more solid.  I carry a journal that I am constantly writing things down in that I want to do for my business, for my blog, or for my writing.  I had tried doing this with an app on my iPad and iPhone and it didn’t work as well as the journal did because that’s right there in your face.

My journal that I currently carry around with me everywhere. It’s awesome and has the cutest pages inside it! OH…and my Seven Year Ink Pen with the anchor and whale on it. 😀

In my journal I keep track of…
[list type=”small-star”] [li]things I was to write blog posts about[/li] [li]ideas for ebooks I want to write with notes for them[/li] [li]ideas for things I want to make for The Witch’s Parlor[/li] [li]notes for books I’m working on[/li] [li]lists of websites that are inspiring[/li] [li]ideas for paintings I want to work on with sketches[/li] [/list]

And when I feel inclined I add pictures that I’ve cut out or printed from the computer and I’m NOT above doodling in the margins!  {Zentangles anyone!?!}

Buuuut….if you’re not convinced about writing things down like I am, I would HIGHLY recommend getting Evernote.  Evernote is my go-to app for notes and saving stuff.  They have Mac and PC apps and apps for iPhone and Android.  And, once you have Evernote, you HAVE to get the Web Clipper.  This is makes Evernote the most awesome and amazing app you have!  You’ll be able to save web articles or whole web pages with a single click and they synch automatically to Evernote.  Then you can organize them by creating “notebooks” in Evernote.  I have a whole Book of Shadows section with sub sections in my Evernote app where I have blog posts, articles, spells, rituals, and recipes from my favorite magickal people.  Seriously you’ll never lose anything again on your computer!

Ok, but what about prioritizing?

If we’re talking about business stuff, which is usually where I’m overwhelmed, here are the two most important things to know to get moving.

[sws_green_box box_size=”550″]

Do the thing that is easiest for you today.

Do the things that are closest to making you money.[/sws_green_box]

Every day you want to get something done, every day you should make some kind of progress even if it’s just answering some emails that have been hanging around for a little bit.  When it comes to biggest projects, work on the things that are closest to making you money, especially since we’re talking business here.

So if you have project that you’re half way through and you’ve been slow on getting it done, that’s the thing to work on now.  Even if you have a great idea for a new project, just makes notes but don’t actually start working on it until what you’ve already got in process is done.

This is how we unintentionally {or more to the point, subconsciously} create overwhelm!

[fontpress type=”webfonts” name=”Happy Monkey” size=”18px” lh=”20px” color=”#8400D1″]3. Schedule It Out![/fontpress] Here’s the biggest problem for a lot of solopreneurs and creative people.  We, and I say “we” because for a long time I was one of these people, treat what we do like a hobby rather than a business yet we expect it to give the results of a business.

You have to treat it like work in some ways and one of those ways is scheduling things and planning things, especially big things, if you want to really get things done.  Scheduling out time each week for work is important, even if it’s only a few hours a day.  Set goals for the week, goals for each day, and time each day to accomplish them.

I found this wicked cool craft to make a reusable to-do list that I think everyone could use!  Simple, cute, and easy to personalize for whatever you need whether it’s for business, personal projects, even things at home.

But I know how some people who fall into the solopreneur category feel about scheduling and treating what they do in any sort of a traditional work way, but I also have seen how so many people end up with professional hobbies rather than thriving businesses because of it.

Know when you’re most productive, what hours of the day you are naturally more fused, and what your environment needs to be like in order to really focus.  I know for me it’s early in the morning or late at night and I actually work really well when I work out of the home.  You might find going to a park or coffee shop to work for a few hours helps you when you’re feeling really stuck.

Interesting Fact:  It’s been scientifically proven that “normal” adults can only focus on a single task for up to 40 minutes and every 20 minutes they need to refocus.  Try scheduling your day out in segments in order to help you get the most done at the best times of day for you.

[fontpress type=”webfonts” name=”Happy Monkey” size=”18px” lh=”20px” color=”#8400D1″]4. Let It Go![/fontpress] Sometimes there are projects or things we want to do that just aren’t meant to be.  Whether that means we need to let it go for now or let it go forever, we need to be honest with ourselves when something just isn’t working out and either find away to tweak it or let it go.

When we hang on to things that aren’t serving us or aren’t producing anything for us we end up creating more overwhelm.  We start to feel pressured because we have this project hanging over our heads and we haven’t done anything with it or we just don’t feel connected to it anymore.

But I know…I can hear some of you already.

[sws_blockquote align=”left” alignment=”alignleft” cite=”” quotestyles=”style05″] But this is what I’m supposed to create! If I wasn’t meant to create it it wouldn’t have come to me! The Goddess wouldn’t have put it in my soul! [/sws_blockquote]

I know, babe, it’s tough.  I’ve been there.  Sometimes you just have to let a project or idea go so that a bigger and better one can make its way to you!

I spend about 6 years working on a book on Wicca.  I got really frustrated when it came to the point of starting to really write it and consider who I would submit it to for publishing or IF I would submit it at all.  I saw hundreds of books on Wicca on the market at the time and they were all saying the same thing and I didn’t know that I felt like I was really bringing anything new to the table, mostly because I had been so focused on creating something that would sell to a publisher that I wasn’t really creating something authentic and unique.

If I hadn’t cleared the decks, this book wouldn’t have happened!

And now I was overwhelmed.

It wasn’t getting written, I was constantly making more notes, thinking of changing things, etc…never actually creating!

So I let it go.  And within a year and a half of that I wrote and published my tarot book Within The Cards.

If I hadn’t let the book on Wicca go I would have still been struggling with that and I wouldn’t have written my tarot book, which has been quite successful!  The Wicca book has been resurfacing for me lately, and some of your dreams you let go of will do that!  If they do revisit them, get to know them again, and find ways that you can rework them to make them manifest this time around

From time to time you just need to clean the slate.  Delete emails that you haven’t been answers that have sat in your inbox for months, let go of projects that you haven’t touched in ages, and make room for things that are going to be able to come to you and actually manifest for you.

[fontpress type=”webfonts” name=”Happy Monkey” size=”18px” lh=”20px” color=”#8400D1″]5. Trust Yourself![/fontpress] There are a lot of people that will give you a lot of advice about how to get through projects, make your business bright, live with joy and happiness but the only person who really knows what you need is you!  {Yes, the irony of me saying that in this article doesn’t escape me.}

There will be times that you’ll need a day off.

You may need to scrap the bigger part of a project and start over.

You might really need to just stay up for 24hrs straight and create like a madwoman!

Or you just might need a nap!

DO IT!!!

Whatever it is that your body is telling you, listen and follow it.  If your head hurts and you need to decompress by watching TV or napping, go for it.  If you really need a day or night away from the pile of overwhelm in order to refocus, go!  Trust me when I tell you, it will be there when you get back and you’ll be able to see it all more clearly!

Be in the moment and know when that moment is a moment to do something else!

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What are 25 Big Things you’d like to get done before the end of 2012?  Believe it or not 2012 is going to end soon {YIKES}!  So now is the time to decide on what you really want to do before the year is over.

Below you can download a fun little playsheet that I made that you can write out your 25 Big Things list for the rest of 2012!  Remember write it down and this is a way to do it!  Write down your things and cross them off as you finish them.  You can post this somewhere in your home or office, add it to a journal, or even a Book of Shadows if your goals are going to be spiritual.

[fontpress type=”webfonts” name=”Happy Monkey” size=”18px” lh=”20px” color=”#8400D1″]Download Me and Use Me![/fontpress]

[sws_button_icon_ui label=”Download Now” href=”http://rowanpendragon.com/downloads/25BigThings.pdf” ui_theme=”ui-smoothness” icon=”ui-icon-document” target=”_blank”] [/sws_button_icon_ui]

[fontpress type=”webfonts” name=”Happy Monkey” size=”18px” lh=”20px” color=”#8400D1″]May the rest of your 2012 be full of awesome!!![/fontpress]

 

Comments

  1. BittenUsagi says

    I just can’t get over how much I needed this post right now!! Thank you so much. I immediately made the goal chart (two actually), grabbed a fresh notebook and downloaded Evernote! Thank you!

Client Love

When I started coaching with Jess I thought I was coming to her for help with a breakup and an unexpected and sudden international move. It turned out that wasn't the real issue at all! Jess asked questions I never would have thought to ask myself and gave me a whole new perspective on what was going on in my life. She made me feel like what I want matters. By the time we were done I felt like I could take on the world!

Patricia

Jess Carlson
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2019-05-09T10:56:03-07:00

Patricia

When I started coaching with Jess I thought I was coming to her for help with a breakup and an unexpected and sudden international move. It turned out that wasn't the real issue at all! Jess asked questions I never would have thought to ask myself and gave me a whole new perspective on what was going on in my life. She made me feel like what I want matters. By the time we were done I felt like I could take on the world!
Incredible, intuitive, thoughtful, and professional reader! Will definitely book with Jess again.

Cadey

Jess Carlson
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2019-11-11T23:09:41-08:00

Cadey

Incredible, intuitive, thoughtful, and professional reader! Will definitely book with Jess again.
OMG I'm blown away by the accuracy of the reading. Jess has a special gift. What she revealed to me, opened me up to a place I knew I should be at but was holding myself back from.

Masha

Jess Carlson
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2019-11-11T23:10:42-08:00

Masha

OMG I'm blown away by the accuracy of the reading. Jess has a special gift. What she revealed to me, opened me up to a place I knew I should be at but was holding myself back from.
I was so overwhelmed trying to get back into my witchcraft practice, but Jess helped me create an actual plan and a schedule for doing the work. The results in just two months has been far beyond my expectations. I'm in touch with my power like never before!

Sara

Jess Carlson
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2019-11-11T23:14:38-08:00

Sara

I was so overwhelmed trying to get back into my witchcraft practice, but Jess helped me create an actual plan and a schedule for doing the work. The results in just two months has been far beyond my expectations. I'm in touch with my power like never before!
Jess is a great teacher, as well as an insightful reading and a wonderful healer. Her lessons are informative and easy to understand. Her cards speak to her in a way that I hope mine will to me one day. I have also had a Chakra session and a Reiki session with her and afterward I felt at peace, balanced, and whole again (I was quite sick at the time). I trust very few people, and I follow my path alone, but I trust Jess. She’s a beautiful spirit.

Bev

Jess Carlson
5
2019-05-09T10:56:45-07:00

Bev

Jess is a great teacher, as well as an insightful reading and a wonderful healer. Her lessons are informative and easy to understand. Her cards speak to her in a way that I hope mine will to me one day. I have also had a Chakra session and a Reiki session with her and afterward I felt at peace, balanced, and whole again (I was quite sick at the time). I trust very few people, and I follow my path alone, but I trust Jess. She’s a beautiful spirit.
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