OUR BLOG

25 Feb 2021
Feeling Overwhelmed

Feeling Overwhelmed, Exhausted Do This

Feeling Overwhelmed; Beautiful Day or Not? What do you do?

Today I want to talk about, ‘Feeling Overwhelmed.’ When you start to feel overwhelmed it can create anxiety and a whole host of other emotions.

wood chip pile that has to be moved
This wood chip pile has to move and I’m too overwhelmed thinking about it.

I talk about how the Power of Ten saved me from being completely overwhelmed and to accomplish an overwhelming task. My wife introduced me to overwhelm by saying a few simple words, “I don’t like it.”

Dagger to the Heart

My wife came to me the other day and said, “I don’t like the yard.”

To be honest, I was utterly devastated. It was like a dagger to the heart. I couldn’t believe my wife just said that.

I have been working so hard on fixing up the yard, but she did not like it. Granted there were wood chips in the driveway, but I’m working on preparing the place where those wood chips are going to go.

Miscellaneous things are lying around and some random¬†trash that’s blown in from our busy street.

How could she not like the yard though?

Feeling Overwhelmed Set In

Feeling overwhelmed at everything I need to do.
I was exhausted and overwhelmed thinking about everything I need to do.

She goes on to explain how she does not like the wood chips, the trash, the look of something, the … and she keeps going on.

Wow!

Every word she said caused me to get more and more stressed and start to feel overwhelmed at what needs to happen.

These thoughts start running through my head:

  • I’m already swamped, what more can I do?
  • How am I going to fit something else into the schedule and finish all of these things?
  • Of course, the yard does not look very nice right now, but I’m working on it.
  • I also start to develop some resentment towards her.
    (Huge Warning Sign)

Stop and Reassess

I knew once I started feeling resentment towards my wife, something was wrong. I had to reassess the situation and look at it from her perspective.

The yard was a disaster; the wood chips are unsightly. The more I looked at it from her eyes, the more I could see how much I had let it all go.

Wood chip pile and mess was unsightly
Wood chip pile and mess I needed to move was unsightly and she was right, it looked awful.

When we first got married, we made a compromise; whatever happened outside I had the final say, and whatever happened inside the house, she had the final say.

With that said, I realized I could start taking some immediate action and get the yard cleaned up.

Make a Plan – Break Down the Process

overwhelming list of things to do
Part of the list of things I had t do that were overwhelming.
  1. I needed to get the retaining wall completed first.
    1. Gather the wood.
    2. Get rebar.
    3. Purchase drill bits.
  2. The next thing was to put up the brick lining on the opposite side.
    1. Get cinder block.
    2. Outline path.
    3. Stabilize cinder block.
  3. Move woodchips.
    1. Get Wheelbarrow and all necessary tools.

Steps to Chunk Down Your Process

The chunking process is simple, and will help with get rid of feeling overwhelmed follow these steps:

  1. Identify the project or the item to be worked on.
  2. Recognize the tools that you will need; the tools could be a pen a paper, etc.
  3. Imagine the project finished and broke it down, working backward.
  4. Start. After you have identified the smaller pieces, start working on one of these chunks for 10 minutes at a time.
    1. Set a timer to work on it for ten minutes and then stop. You can work on it again in about 1 hour but for only 10-minutes at a time.

The process I listed above was how I broke it down so I would not be so overwhelmed. However I realized that the more I listed to do, the more I felt my overwhelm getting so much that I was going to snap.

I had to take action or I would snap at anyone or anything.

You will notice things start getting completed and soon the project will be done.

Look at the things in your life and start breaking them down into smaller pieces. I recommend working 1 hour and take a 10-minute break and then repeat the process.

I have implemented this process many times in my life and completed books, physical projects, and spiritual goals, etc. You can apply what I call the Power of Ten today.

Reiteration to Overcome Feeling Overwhelmed

I’m going to recap what I’ve already mentioned above because it’s that important.

Remember when you start to feel overwhelmed, you need to step back and breakdown the project or goal into simple chunks. You need to start simplifying the issues at hand so you can get out of the overwhelm stage you’re in.

Introducing the Power of Ten

The following is the picture story of how I implemented what I mentioned above to complete several yard projects.

Logs needing to be stacked up.
Logs that needed to be moved and stacked up after removing a tree.

When I’m feeling overwhelmed this concept has saved me many times, like Mary Poppins coming in with all of her magical talents.

I told myself, I’m going to work on accomplishing these tasks at least 10 min every day or every break. I usually work for 60 min and take a 10 min break.

In my case, I wanted to get this mess under control faster so every break, I would go outside, which would get me away from the desk and give me some exercise, and work for ten minutes.

wood chip pile 2
The wood chip pile gradually got cleaned up by implementing the Power of Ten.

If I was to add up all of the time, it was probably about 4 or 5 hours, which seems like a lot but when doing it 10 min at a time it isn’t. I started to notice the projects were getting knocked off, one at a time.

wood chip pile is getting smaller
Notice the pile gradually got smaller and smaller as well as other projects.

The woodchip pile slowly disappeared and the next thing I know, it’s done!

fire pit before
Overwhelming project before I implemented the Power of Ten.

Praise and Accolades

I looked around and noticed it was all done. My wife comes out and is praising me for all of my hard work. She gave me a remarkable accolade of peanut butter, chocolate shake. Oh yes, worth every minute.

wood chip pile removed
Wood chip pile removed and put around the yard after implementing the Power of Ten
wood chip pile 5
Fire pit completed after implementing the Power of Ten exercise.

Summation

Thinking about a project or things to do came feel incredibly overwhelming because of everything that needs to happen.

Feeling overwhelmed can shut you down so make sure to break the project down into small steps and apply the Power of Ten, which is work on it 10 minutes every hour.

If you can’t work on it every hour, work on it ten minutes when you can or even only 10 minutes a day. Eventually, your project will be completed, and you can experience the joy that comes from accomplishing tasks that are seemingly overwhelming.

As a Life Mentor, I’m ecstatic to help you achieve your goals and improve your mindset. There are some days where all you can do is cope and that’s okay, use these coping strategies.

If you are feeling so overwhelmed and anxious that you can’t function or get out of bed, please seek help from a qualified therapist to help you process your trauma that’s keeping you stuck.

Tony Rhoton – Life Mentor, Coach, and Speaker

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