Life can be overwhelming for all of us. Work commitments, hobbies, possibly kids, maybe elderly or ailing parents and relatives, errands that have to get done, unending housework, car troubles, bad news streaming at us from all angles, pressure to look good, time to exercise, get dinner on the table, pay bills, go to appointments…..
What happens when we feel overwhelmed:
We have trouble giving ourselves credit for what we HAVE accomplished
We lock up and freeze, unable to move or make decisions on projects or process
We give up at the foot of the mountain
We are unable to see past the big picture to the next actual step
We want to hide under the blanket and just have a good cry
We feel like we failed because we didn’t have time for our creativity
It’s no wonder we have difficulty getting to our creativity and making time to refill our well of wonder. Not everyone can hire an organizer like Marie Kondo or even install a new closet system. Some people have difficulty saying no to things and others. Some people like having a lot to do. Other people might not realize how much they’re doing, they just know it’s too much.
However, a lot of overwhelm comes from having high expectations of ourselves. We think we can do more, take on more, get more done. We might even do it just because “it’s easier than asking someone else to do it”. (Although that can run into another issue, perfectionism, but we’ll address that at another time.) In reality, everyone has a limit. And we unfortunately tend to let our beloved creativity slide down the priority list and sometimes even fall off the bottom.
Something we can all try is a credit report. No, not from one of the big three that give you anxiety and can ruin your chances of getting a loan. I’m talking about giving yourself credit for what you have done. Write out a list of everything you accomplished lately. Think about the small things, too. You got up this morning and got out of bed? Gold star! You managed to eat breakfast before starting work? Blue ribbon! You remembered to trim your nails or post that birthday card to Aunt Thelma? Go you! Put it all on the list. I’ve written everything from “painted for five minutes” to “fed the cats” to “updated my website.” Look at how much you’ve actually done! Give yourself credit for everything and permission to feel accomplished.
It’s okay to feel overwhelmed. Take a deep breath, get a cup of your favorite beverage, and take a moment to tell yourself, “I am human. I sometimes feel overwhelmed. I give myself permission to feel that. I give myself permission to take five minutes to myself and accept I deserve that time.”
I also invite you to check out the Facebook page and post about feeling overwhelmed and how much you really do that affects your creativity. Let us know if anything else works for you.