Martina Jay | The Unclutter Nutter

Easy strategies to deal with daily overwhelm

published21 days ago
4 min read

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So let's get into this week's topic!

As a working mum, I know all about how stressful and ‘FULL’ life can feel. And this isn’t always the fulfilling type of full. It’s the full where you just feel like you have too much going on!

But what can you do?

✖ You can’t get rid of your kids. (Some days it’s tempting!)

✖ You can’t just quit your job! (Well, I suppose you could but there are still bills that need to be paid.)

✖ You can’t just ditch the spouse overnight. (Again, you technically could but it’s probably best to have a proper think about this before making such a bold move!)

✖ You can’t just shut the world out and go off on a meditative retreat in the Himalayas for 2 months to regroup. (Once again, soooo tempting!)

So what can you do?

Well, here are some easy ways to get you to lighten the load on your own shoulders when life feels a little too full.

1. Ditch Perfection

With many things we do in life, we think we need to do them all perfectly. That we need to execute each task with precision!

But I’m here to remind you that NAH, you don’t need to do that.

As the saying goes, ‘Done is better than perfect’ and if it takes you a day to do something perfectly or it takes you 10 minutes to just get it done, choose option B! It’s still done. And most importantly, it’s usually only YOU that expects it to be perfect. So take that pressure off of you and use that energy on something else or even better, take some time to relax and find that peace of mind you’re after.

2. Learn to Delegate

Now this one comes with a little ‘warning’. When I say delegate, I don’t mean turn into a nagging lunatic that just bosses everyone else around so that she can sit on her arse and do nothing.

Nope. That’s not the intention.

But feeling the stress a little? Remind yourself that you’re not responsible for everything. It’s okay to ask others to help and it’s even okay to expect others to help, especially your own household.

Kids get packed lunches for school? Get them to start helping out. Maybe they can choose their snacks and put them on the counter top ready to be put in their lunch box to save you some decision making. Or they could fill up their water bottles and put them in their backpacks. Or even better, are they old enough to pack their own lunches?

Even the small things help. And then they work their way up to doing bigger things!

Ask your partner to get dinner ready on certain nights.

Maybe grandma can pick the kids up from school on Wednesdays so you can have extra time for your book club (or whatever it is you want to do! Nap?).

I can’t tell you what to delegate and to whom…but you get the idea. Use the people and the resources around you to help out with the things that need to get done.

3. Take a Pause

Okay, I know this will sound counterintuitive because you’re busy and you're trying to get things done! But hear me out! When we feel stressed or overwhelmed, we are in an overstimulated state and what we really need is to feel more grounded.

To feel more grounded and centered (so that we can think straight and reduce the amount of cortisol - the stress hormone - in our body) we want to be able to calm ourselves down and have a moment of connection rather than being pumped full of adrenaline and staying in ‘fight or flight’ mode.

There are so many simple ways to help ourselves feel more calm and at ease but here are a few simple suggestions that anyone could do:

  • Meditate or just sit in a quiet place
  • Deep breathing/breathwork
  • Exercise
  • Get fresh air (go for a walk outside, sit in the garden…)
  • Self-hypnosis
  • Journaling
  • Listening to music

If you take 10 minutes to focus on you and get yourself more centered, you will be so much more productive and efficient and be able to get on with the rest of your day without feeling like you’re running on fumes.

So in essence, you take time out to gain more time in the end. 😉

4. Make a Change

If you notice that something isn’t working out repeatedly, rather than just putting up with it and experiencing the same issue time and time again, make a change. Figure out what small shift you can make to improve a situation and make it less stressful for you.

For example, the kids’ swimming lessons fall on your busiest day of the week and it always causes stress and frustration between you all. You end up rushing them to the pool, feeling irritable because you didn’t get to finish what you needed to finish (again!) and next week, it’ll probably be the same story!

It’s time to make a change. Can you change the day of their swimming lessons? Maybe you can change their swimming club and find one who’s schedule works better for you. Or maybe you can shift things at work so it’s not your busiest day anymore.

Only you know what changes are possible and what would make your life easier.

Overall, remember that just because you have been doing something a certain way, doesn’t mean it has to continue that way. You always have the option of change, however small the change might be.

I hope these tips will come in use when you find yourself in a tizzle and feel frustrated or stuck. Ditch the need for perfection, remember to delegate, take a time out and consider making a change.

I’d love to know which option resonates with you the most and the ones you will have a go at implementing.

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