Help! I am Feeling Overwhelmed

Place of Serenity | Feeling overwhelmed

How to unhook from feeling overwhelmed

Maybe right now you are overwhelmed by anxiety, fear, loneliness, difficult thoughts or low mood? Whatever it is, you feel as though an avalanche is happening. You have a sense of drowning. Engulfed in the overwhelming experience.

So what do you?

Turn to your heart

‘…Do not strengthen their hunger

By choosing fear.

Rather, decide to call on your heart …’

John O’Donohue ‘For Loneliness’

To unhook from feeling overwhelmed, recognise that the little flame Place of Serenity | Feeling overwhelmedin your heart has become a tiny ember. This lifeforce within you has been almost smothered. So a good place to start is to kindle the flame of your heart.

You must call on your own inner nurturer – be your own best friend.

Soften your body as it’s likely to be tense and uncomfortable.

Place your hand onto your heart and let your slow, deep breaths begin to fan the flames. You are not fighting against feeling overwhelmed. You let yourself sit gently with it. Allow a gentle sense of surrender.

And meantime, focus away from the deluge of difficult thoughts onto a simple pleasure.

Simple pleasures

Use your sense of smell:

Take some deep breaths and let these tiny aromas fill you with contentment.

– The smell of a favourite essential oil or a familiar perfume. Place of Serenity | Feeling overwhelmed

–  A fresh cup of tea or coffee.

– A newly peeled orange.

You can do this when you go outside too – take some lungfuls of air.

– Notice the smell of woodsmoke or damp earth after the rain.

Your breath is your best friend.

Tiny acts of joy

These are simple. Because if you are overwhelmed, you don’t need more complication in your life. Remind yourself of the things that give you pleasure. One tiny action can start kindling your heart. Place of Serenity | Feeling overwhelmed

Words can be powerful. Pick up a favourite book. It could be poetry, a novel or some fascinating non-fiction.

A chapter or a line before bedtime may be just enough to divert negative thoughts. And instead, lets you enter a place of peace, wonderment or quiet joy. A softer way to fall asleep.

Remember an activity that you’ve enjoyed in the past. Keep it real simple if that’s all you can manage. It might be some art or craft – something that gives you pleasure and a sense of satisfaction.

Choose something that you can turn your mind to easily at home. Perhaps baking, drawing, embroidery. Overwhelming thoughts lessen their stranglehold while your focus is trained elsewhere.

Listen to a favourite piece of music. Let yourself move to the music! Or find some podcasts to listen to – it’s easy to find anything at all that captures your interest. Music, drama or chat.

Make a List of Joyful Things

Focus on what is of value to yourself. Rather than taking on more, you may need to pare down to less.

Remind yourself of things which give you joy and pleasure. And just check to see whether you’ve abandoned all of these things. Perhaps life has become overwhelmed with difficult and challenging thoughts and experiences. And it’s time to get balance back.

Check in to what makes your heart sing.

And you can start living life with more balance. Your blazing heart needs just a little attention from you. And that will encourage it to be glowing and full again.

And any time you start feeling overwhelmed with challenging experiences, remember to turn to your joys.

Kindle the flames of your heart!

Mindfulness and Meditation

 

Yvette Jane

Nurture your joy at Place of Serenity

 

 

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