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10 Things I Do When I'm Feeling Overwhelmed


Image by Shop Ellion

Anxious.


Paralyzed.


You may feel this way when you think about tackling a home organizing project. But, guess what? Professional organizers like me get overwhelmed too, but my anxiety is a little different than my clients.


My clients feel it when they see a cluttered room or a garage full of boxes. They see this huge project ahead of them and are unsure of where to start.

You may be wondering what gives me that same feeling. For me, days when I’m NOT organizing someone else’s space, I feel lost. Sometimes it's a relief to have a little break and work from home on other aspects of my business, and some days it leaves me in a sheer panic. I dwell on unhelpful thoughts like: “Why didn’t that person ask me back for another project?” “Am I going to hear from that new client today?”


Instead of letting my thoughts spiral, I get up and I do something. Anything.

When we get overwhelmed, or feel anxious or paralyzed, it can be difficult to find the internal motivation to move past the feelings of discomfort. Below is my list of simple and easy things that help me feel accomplished and motivated even on the toughest of days.


Things I do when I’m feeling overwhelmed:


Make my bed

This is a little task that makes me feel like an adult even though it's the most menial of chores.


Cry

Let it gooooooo. When I’m feeling overwhelmed, I let myself cry for a few minutes. I allow myself to feel my emotions and don’t beat myself up about it. To me, crying isn’t a sign of weakness. It usually helps me to get my emotions out of the way so I can get my shit together. Have trouble getting it out? Just watch a good, heartfelt movie or show. It can really help release those emotions. Queer Eye on Netflix gets me everytime!


Call my husband (or a friend)

He's the sweetest. Even when I feel like I’ve accomplished nothing, he makes me feel like I’ve climbed a mountain. He’s good at encouraging me to keep pushing when I need to or relax when I’m being too hard on myself.


20 minutes of yoga

I put on a yoga station on Spotify that has different episodes for different types of moods. Again, makes me feel like I’m doing SOMETHING good for myself. I try to relax my mind and get back to business when the 20 minutes is up.


Go for a walk

Depending on my dog’s mood, I’ll take him with me. He loves to go for walks, but only down certain streets on certain days. I know, he's a werido. During the walk, I catch up on one of my favorite podcasts. It usually motivates me to get focused by the time I make it back home.


Write a to do list

It seems simple, but write down everything you need to do for the day. I also keep an ongoing to do list for whenever there is extra time during other days when I’m more on top of my game. I think to myself, “What would make me feel good to complete by the end of the day? What will make me feel like I’ve had a productive day?” I focus on only a few tasks (3 max) on days I’m feeling overwhelmed. To organize my business and personal tasks, I also always have two lists. Working from home has its perks but often I get lost doing personal things on business hours. I keep two separate lists to try and keep myself focused on the right tasks at the right times.


Wipe my kitchen counters

Something about a clean kitchen helps me to focus. I can’t seem to move on with my to-do list when I know there are dishes in the sink or a dirty counter.


Light a candle

It makes me feel like my house is clean even when it isn’t. Plus, everything smells good! My favorite candles are from my friend, Ellie and her Houston-based company Shop Ellion.


Do a load of laundry

Even when you’ve accomplished nothing for the day, doing a load of laundry makes you feel like you’ve done SOMETHING.


Drink a glass of water

My anxiety is usually the result of drinking too much coffee (we’ve all been there). Hydration is key for me to get myself back on track and focused.



What do you do when you are feeling overwhelmed? Let’s share our strategies with one another and we may just help someone to start doing something.

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