16 Things To Remember When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed And Anxious

Feeling overwhelmed and anxious is a common experience, but it can be incredibly tough to navigate. Whether it’s work deadlines, relationship troubles, or just the general chaos of life, these feelings can leave us feeling paralyzed and stressed. Remember, you’re not alone in this. There are things you can do to ease the burden and regain a sense of control. Let’s explore some simple yet effective reminders for those moments when everything feels like too much.

1. It’s okay to not be okay.

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First and foremost, acknowledge your feelings. Don’t try to suppress or ignore them. It’s okay to feel overwhelmed and anxious. These emotions are a natural part of the human experience. Give yourself permission to feel what you’re feeling without judgment.

2. Breathe. Just breathe.

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When anxiety strikes, our breathing tends to become shallow and rapid. Take a few moments to focus on your breath. Inhale deeply through your nose, filling your belly with air, and exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat this several times until you feel your heart rate slow down and your body relax. As Medical News Today explains, the 4-7-8 breathing technique may be particularly helpful for anxiety.

3. Breaking tasks into smaller chunks can make them less overwhelming.

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When you’re feeling overwhelmed, even small tasks can seem insurmountable. Instead of focusing on the big picture, break down your to-do list into smaller, more manageable steps. This can make things feel less daunting and give you a sense of accomplishment as you complete each step.

4. Prioritizing self-care is a must.

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When you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s easy to neglect your own needs. But taking care of yourself is essential for managing stress and anxiety. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep, eating nutritious food, and engaging in activities that bring you joy.

5. You can and should always reach out for support.

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Don’t try to go it alone. Talk to a trusted friend, family member, or therapist about how you’re feeling. Sharing your burdens with someone who cares can help alleviate the weight on your shoulders and provide you with valuable support and perspective.

6. Make sure you limit exposure to triggers.

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If certain situations or people tend to trigger your anxiety, try to limit your exposure to them when you’re feeling overwhelmed. This might mean saying no to social events, turning off the news, or taking a break from social media.

7. Practicing mindfulness can make a world of difference.

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Mindfulness is the practice of being fully present in the moment without judgment. It can help you become more aware of your thoughts and feelings, allowing you to respond to them in a more balanced way. There are many different mindfulness techniques, such as meditation, yoga, and deep breathing exercises.

8. Remember, this too shall pass, as they say.

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No matter how intense your feelings may seem, remember that they won’t last forever. Anxiety comes in waves, and it will eventually subside. Focus on riding out the wave and remind yourself that you have the strength to overcome it.

9. It’s important to challenge your negative thoughts.

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Anxiety often goes hand-in-hand with negative thought patterns. When you find yourself spiraling into negativity, take a moment to challenge those thoughts. Are they truly accurate? Are you catastrophizing or jumping to conclusions? Try to reframe your thoughts in a more positive and realistic way.

10. Doing a bit of exercise is proven to help alleviate anxiety.

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Exercise is a natural stress reliever, the Mayo Clinic notes. Even a short walk, jog, or yoga session can help clear your head and boost your mood. Physical activity releases endorphins, which have mood-boosting effects and can help reduce anxiety.

11. You have a lot to be thankful for.

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Take a few moments each day to reflect on the things you’re grateful for. It could be anything from your health and loved ones to the sunshine or a good cup of coffee. Focusing on the positive aspects of your life can help shift your perspective and reduce feelings of overwhelm.

12. It’s important to unplug and disconnect.

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Thanks to the internet and the 24/7 news cycle, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the constant stream of information and notifications. Take regular breaks from technology. Turn off your phone, close your laptop, and disconnect from the online world. This can help you recharge and refocus your energy.

13. Embracing imperfection is a game-changer.

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Strive for progress, not perfection. Remember, it’s okay to make mistakes and not have everything figured out. Trying to be perfect all the time can lead to unnecessary stress and anxiety. Embrace your imperfections and celebrate your successes, no matter how small.

14. Doing something creative can help.

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According to Psych Central, engaging in creative activities can be a great way to channel your emotions and reduce anxiety. Whether it’s painting, writing, playing music, or simply coloring, expressing yourself creatively can help you tap into a different part of your brain and find a sense of calm.

15. You can (and should) talk to a mental health professional if needed.

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If your feelings of overwhelm and anxiety are persistent and interfering with your daily life, don’t hesitate to get professional help. A therapist or counselor can provide you with tools and strategies for managing your emotions and improving your overall well-being.

16. Remember, you’re stronger than you think.

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You have the strength and resilience to overcome any challenge that comes your way. Even in the midst of overwhelm and anxiety, remember that you’re capable, resourceful, and worthy of happiness. Don’t give up on yourself. Keep moving forward, one step at a time.

Phoebe Mertens is a writer, speaker, and strategist who has helped dozens of female-founded and led companies reach success in areas such a finance, tech, science, and fashion. Her keen eye for detail and her innovative approach to modern womanhood makes her one of the most sought-out in her industry, and there's nothing she loves more than to see these companies shine.

With an MBA from NYU's Stern School of Business and features in Forbes and Fast Company she Phoebe has proven she knows her stuff. While she doesn't use social media, she does have a private Instagram just to look at pictures of cats.