Everyone deals with stress from time to time—it’s perfectly normal. In fact, it helps us progress in life. If you don’t experience at least a little bit of stress, you should probably check your pulse because you might be dead. However, stress and overwhelm start to get unhealthy when there’s too much of it and you are unable to cope.
When things get too overwhelming, it’s important to know how to recognize those feelings, how to keep a healthy level of stress in your daily life and do what you need to do to overcome them. Here are a few things you can do to better your life and stop feeling overwhelmed.
1. Know What’s Triggering Your Stress
When you’re feeling stressed to the point of overwhelm, the first thing you need to do is figure out exactly what is causing it. It’s really important that you know where your stress is coming from. Feeling stressed without knowing why is a major cause of overwhelm, and it’s harder to overcome it if you can’t pinpoint why it’s happening. People tend to get stuck in that place.
2. Learn to Manage Your Emotions in the Midst of Change
Change can be a huge trigger of stress and anxiety. For example, when teens first enter the treatment setting, they may be pulled out of their homes and forced to adapt to a new “normal.” They don’t have the ability to fall back on their escapes, like Netflix, movies, gaming addictions, or other things. When these escapes are taken away, they can really learn to manage their emotions and address the issue the right way.
One great way to learn how to manage emotions is to start noticing the intrusive thoughts and worries that come to your mind. Awareness is the first step, and being intentional when quieting your mind can make a huge difference as you learn to cope with stress. When you have a clear mind, it is easier to complete your tasks and tackle your issues one by one, which reduces stress and overwhelm.
3. Create a Plan to Overcome
One misconception surrounding stress and overwhelm is that you have to overcome it all at once. Start to turn the tide and better your life by doing a number of small things every day. Small but impactful things you can do to overcome stress are: become aware of your triggers, learn how to manage your emotions, and find someone you love and trust to talk with.
Just like we all have stress in our lives, we have the strength to overcome it and stop feeling overwhelmed. When you figure out what’s important in your life and learn how to manage your emotions, you can have the power to let go of what doesn’t matter to you and prioritize what does. Hold onto hope and your life will continually get better.
To learn more, listen to our Not by Chance Podcast episode “Overcoming Overwhelm” on Apple Podcast or Spotify.