Have you ever felt overwhelmed? I sure have. I was recently on an Instagram Live where Ashley, one of my fellow mama friends was talking about ways to decrease the feeling of being overwhelmed. During the live she said that she was going to have a podcast episode all about it. I was immediately excited that someone else was talking about it. Then I thought I should write about my experience with it too. So friends here we are. I’ve linked Ashley’s podcast above. Go check her out! She’s amazing!
Instead of writing a super duper uber long blog post about this I have decided to break this up into 3 parts. My idea is to create small bite sized chunks that will hopefully allow me to unpack what I have experienced in a clear and concise format and also be easier for you to digest. In this first part my goal is to give you the basics of what overwhelm means and what it feels like for me. In the next part I will give you a real life example that happened to me a couple of weeks ago. In the last part I will provide resources that will hopefully help if you ever need them. So let’s jump into what overwhelm means and what it feels like for me.
Websters dictionary definition of overwhelm is to upset, overthrow or to cover over completely; to overcome by superior force or numbers; or to overpower in thought or feeling. The last one is what I am referring to in my blog post series. Websters goes on to list a few synonyms for overwhelm. They are crush, devastate, floor, grind (down), oppress, overcome, overmaster, overpower, prostrate, snow under, swamp, whelm. They also state that the word was first known to be used in the 14th century, in the meaning defined as to upset or overthrow. Overwhelm is Middle English, from the word OVER (history and etymology) which is a adverb & preposition, from Old English ofer; akin to Old High German ubar (preposition) above, beyond, over, Latin super, Greek hyper.
Whew chile that was alot! Ok, now that we know the technical definition of the word overwhelm let’s talk about what I feel like when it hits me. It was only recently that I have began to realize what it feels like when it starts vs what it feels like when I am full blown in overwhelm and over it all. I know that I am starting to get overwhelmed when I am irritated easily about EVERYTHING and ANYTHING. The person doing right under the speed limit on the way home, my husband belching after he eats, my Dexcom is about to die because I forgot to charge it, the meat isn’t thawed enough to cook for dinner, my house slipper falling off my foot on the way up the stairs, etc. I mean the least little thing will start to bother me and I’ve learned that is the onset of me feeling overwhelmed and will ask myself what is the real reason I am feeling this way and work to resolve it. Maybe I’m tired, my blood sugar is low or high, I’m stressed, etc.
When I am in a full blown state of being overwhelmed I feel like I am at the edge of a cliff. One foot on and one foot off, it’s a slippery slope. I have a hard time making decisions for even the simplest of things. I don’t use the tools (planner) that I have set up to help me be successful and I have a hard time using my resources (asking for help) or delegating tasks. Nothing gets done and the world spins 10,000 times faster. My sugar is crazy, I don’t have an appetite and when I do I’m not making the healthiest of choices. I have zero motivation to achieve my goals and I feel like everyone else knows how to do life better than me.
Now you can see why it’s so important for me to not get to full blown overwhelm. My goal is to recognize my triggers and knowing what the root cause is allows me to fix the problem and keep my home running smoothly. Come back next week for Part 2!
- Ashley – Routine and Things, routineandthings.com
- Podcast episode – Episode 013: How To Decrease The Overwhelm, https://routineandthings.com/013/
- Overwhelm definition – Merriam-Webster https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/overwhelm