Throughout the week a handful of times I found myself feeling overwhelmed or frustrated and not even knowing why.
But one thing I’ve learned is that sometimes there isn’t a logical reason why we feel things. Sometimes we’re just human. Maybe something happened a year ago at that exact time and you don’t realize it. (Triggers)
Next thing we know, we’re grappling with our emotions and we feel a little bit out of control.
The thing to remember is that we’re all human. The advice that someone once gave me, was a huge wake up call. Embrace the humanity of the situation. Whatever you’re feeling, whatever you’re going through, whatever you’re dealing with, just be with it and don’t resist. Don’t try to change the emotions around it. Don’t try to change your feelings around it. Just observe.
For example: I’ve been having Internet issues. Things come up. On a perfectly relaxed Sunday afternoon, something like that could be no big deal. However, during business days, it can be stressful. That’s just a small day to day thing.
Usually by Thursday / Friday, I’m ready for the weekend. I feel like I’ve expended everything I have. Maybe I didn’t have enough sleep or I’m jet lagged. In some way, I’m compromised. And I’ll think, this isn’t me. Why am I struggling with this. In those times, I remind myself to be gentle.
Sometimes, trying to be strong when you shouldn’t, can be a weakness. There’s something about accepting “It is what it is” versus being resistant, trying to solve it, trying to figure it out, trying to change it, trying to change someone else. Getting all worked up. All that is going to do is cause more resistance. This will suck you deeper into that.
The only way I know to deal is to take a step back and take a breather. Step back into a 30,000 ft. view or as far as you need to.
First thing is, “I’ve got a pulse.” – take a look at yourself, your blessings, your health, your life.
Put things into perspective.
Just doing this instead of trying to change and power through things makes me realize we shouldn’t rush things. We need it to be more fluid. It can be as much of a flow as we want it to be.
Problem is, we get into a habit of being frustrated and overwhelmed. That becomes the norm. Even though consciously we’re not choosing that, subconsciously, our patterning continues to give us that. We continue to recreate circumstances. We recreate episodes. We recreate drama by not implementing systems, by not doing what we know we need to do, by not being proactive, by not doing the 5 things that leaders do. Over time, we compromise our defenses, our abilities to cope. We know we need to get a certain amount of nutrition, exercise, sleep. These are all things we know.
Look for Patterns:
- If there’s a certain area of life or business where you’re consistently experiencing a frustration, patterns are the way to identify those.
- Is there something there that’s happening on a recurring basis?
- “All frustration is the result of the lack of a system.”
- Systems can be mechanical, behavioral, psychological.
- It’s essentially a process or way of doing things.
You have to change your patterns. Do something about it. There are so many things that we can do with the circumstances in our lives, that it’s comical that we’re our own worst enemy. Subconsciously, we leave these things in place. Not intentionally.
If we’re used to being a constant state of overwhelm, we need to learn self-regulate. It’s really not an option. You really don’t have that luxury if you want to do something great.
Daniel Pink’s Drive – The surprising truth about what motivates us. Intrinsic Motivation. Getting clear on the things that drive us and motivate us but at a subconscious level so we can go into a place of flow.
When you’re in a space of flow, and you’re in alignment with your “why” or your purpose, you’re going to have the drive and you’re going to start feeling like you’re ahead of the curve. You’ll start finding yourself behind that eight ball less and less.
When you get overwhelmed, ask yourself, “What’s working?” Spend more time on being grateful vs. worrying. You’ll find yourself ahead of the game. People don’t give themselves enough credit. The universe, God, your body of work, the credit where it’s due.
I find that when I’m not in a place of gratitude, everything pisses me off. It’s the opposite – lack, limitation, worry, fear, frustration.
“It’s not the end of the world. Put things into perspective. Take a step back. Make different choices.”
- Are there areas of your life where you know you can do better?
- Is there anything you procrastinate on?
Look for the small examples because it’s the small ones that all add up.
There are things that we can do and put into place that will free up our time and our mental energy. There’s a reason why we don’t do that sometimes. It’s almost as if we hold onto those things subconsciously because we’re not clear on the big picture; on our priorities.
And we tolerate that.
You’ve got to become intolerant of the things in your life that ultimately end up putting you in a situation where you’re compromised; you end up wasting a day or even a week. You can’t afford that.
The 30K Ft. View
- Go for a walk
- Go for a drive
- Go sit in the park
- Take the dogs for a walk
- Grab a book
- Walk to the coffee shop
Physically remove yourself from whatever environment you’re in. Step away and just be out around other people. You’ll put things into perspective.
When I find myself reaching that point, I don’t even bother forcing it. Do something different. Don’t force it. Forcing it is going to make it worse.
Let’s not be childish. When something is not working and you’ve tried it 5-10 times, take a step back. Reach out. Find counsel. Do some research. Put it on the back burner. Try again tomorrow. Do whatever you can to avoid losing time and energy and momentum in life and business by getting sucked into a negative state, or frustration and overwhelm. You can’t afford to.
You can end up losing an entire day, or week, of productivity. You can’t afford to. You’ve got to be able to self-regulate and control your emotions or control yourself physically so that the emotions can be dealt with.
You’ve got to be able to recognize when it’s happening and do something. Otherwise you’ll get stuck in this reactive state. In the big picture, nothing is that bad. Maybe throw a bit of gratitude.
Gratitude is the anecdote. Give thanks.
There is so much research around happiness. Neuroscientists say that if you spend 5 minutes per day and write 3 things that you’re grateful for and you do it consistently over a 30 day period without putting the same thing down twice, you’ll end up with about 100 things at the end of the month. They were able to measure a significant increase in psychological well-being and happiness. Sean Achor was the scientist.
When you do this as a habit, our brains develop patterns.
Subconsciously, your brain will be looking for the next 3 things tomorrow. After you get into it for a week you start to run out of things and your brain won’t let you. At a subconscious level, your brain is looking for those things.
All of a sudden, you start to see the world in through a different lens. We start to notice all the things that are working versus all the things that are not working. Don’t wait until you’re frustrated. Live in a place of gratitude.
Gratitude and abundance are the same vibrational energy. They are inextricably linked. If you are suffering from lack of abundance in some area of your life, look towards gratitude. Are you living in a victim mode of, ‘Poor me. I’m not good at this,’ or ‘Poor me. My relationships suck,’ then ask yourself, are you in a place of gratitude or are you in a place of lack and limitation?
As always, feel free to comment and share your experiences and thoughts below.