Want to beat overwhelm & increase your energy? Ask for help
If you’ve been feeling extra grouchy, more stressed than usual, more tired or unproductive – hmmm – I wonder if you might be carrying too much on your shoulders. (Hint – probably yes.)
One of the reasons that we get overwhelmed and lack energy is because we don’t ask for help. Not asking for help can also cause a lot of yucky thoughts and feelings.
Trying to do it all means we don’t have the energy or time to spend on things that matter to us, things that are good for us, and things that make us happy!
We actually waste so much time and energy trying to do it all ourselves (you know – trying to be superwoman).
There can actually be A LOT of fallout from not asking for help, which can include symptoms of physical and mental illness.
Overdoing it or pushing yourself can cause exhaustion, injury, or even disease.
It can lead to feelings of total overwhelm and, in my case, anger or feeling like no one cares.
Me: I’m not asking anyone to help me, I can do it all.
Also me: I can’t believe no one helps me. No one gives a f*&% about me!
Asking for help isn’t weak. It’s a great example of how to take care of yourself.Charlie Brown
But, if you are anything like me, and have any perfectionist tendencies or feel even slightly unworthy – you might not ask for help because:
- You don’t want others to know that you can’t handle things or aren’t capable of doing it all.
- You don’t want to feel that potential judgement from others.
- You don’t want people to know that you aren’t perfect.
- You don’t want to put others out or be a burden.
- It might seem easier to get it done ourselves than ask.
- We think we need to do it, so it gets done correctly.
- You don’t want to hear “no” and feel the feelings that come with that response.
Beat overwhelm and increase your energy – download this list (to remind you WHY you should ask for help) PLUS journaling prompts.
It can be beneficial to take some time to understand why it is so hard for you to ask for help. And, if you spend some time journaling on this question, it can be really insightful.
I put together this “pros and cons” type list with journaling questions to ask yourself about this topic.
Knowing why we do something actually helps to move forward. Simply putting your attention on what you want to understand or change makes it more likely to notice when you might be holding back from doing something, like asking for help.
A quick example: If I’m in the kitchen getting pissed off that no one is helping me and I NOTICE these thoughts and feelings, I can also step back and realize the possible reason is that I haven’t asked anyone to help me.
OVERCOME THE AVOIDANCE – LEARN TO ASK FOR HELP
…and you will beat overwhelm and increase your energy!
I know, oftentimes we already “KNOW” why we do something, but taking the actual steps to make changes can seem scary or just too big to tackle.
In the past, I would rarely make changes in my life, because of the feelings associated with doing something outside of my comfort zone. FEAR held me back. I avoided things that would bring up those anxious feelings.
It makes me sad to think about that time in my life. But, I am here today having learned a shit ton of stuff and am happier than ever.
I learned that fear is just a feeling in my body and all feelings come and go.
Back when I was way more anxious about things than I am today, I would avoid those anxious feelings at all costs. I think we believe that feelings won’t stop. For some reasons, we think we will get trapped in those difficult feelings and won’t be able to get out.
If you feel anxious about asking someone for help, sit with that feeling for a bit.
I’ve come to believe that emotions are neither positive nor negative. Some emotions are difficult however; and that’s when it’s important to remember that feelings last for only about 90 seconds.
According to American Tibetan Buddhist Pema Chödrön, if you allow an emotion to exist for 90 seconds without judging it will disappear. (Seriously – try this. And for more – read this post on Happiness.)
Afterwards, you can think more clearly about how to proceed. And I bet, you’ll be more likely to “go for it” and just do the asking!
I learned that I don’t have to be perfect and what I do is completely fine; in fact, most of what I do is pretty fantastic.
I hear a lot of women, when they get to these years, say “I don’t care what anyone thinks of me anymore.” That might be true for some, but for a lot of us, we still struggle with feeling “less than” or that we “don’t measure up” to our neighbor, sister, cousin, co-worker, or the women on Instagram who obviously have it all and do everything perfectly.
If you ask for help, someone may “find out” that you can’t handle “all of the things” or you don’t have it “all together.” I’ve realized that these kinds of thoughts have more to do with how I feel about myself. These kinds of thoughts are about my own confidence level.
I include Affirmations in my journaling to help with confidence. So, writing (or saying) things like:
- My message/what I have to say/share is important to many people.
- I have skills and talents that are unique, special, and make a difference in this world.
- I am compassionate with others and myself.
- I am fully capable of learning new things for personal and professional growth.
Another thing that helps with confidence is taking action to become more competent. So, the more you do something, the easier it gets, and the more confident you become. When I first started writing blog posts, it took me a lot longer to finish one post. Now, I am much more skilled and competent and my confidence level has improved greatly.
I learned that SMALL CONSISTENT progress adds up to major change.
For example, I knew the things that I “needed to do” to be more healthy (physically and mentally) and happy, based on what I read in magazines, saw on Oprah, or was reminded of by my mother (someone who has always had much healthier habits than I have).
They all just seemed like huge undertakings. Plus if I wasn’t totally ready or prepared or have everything perfectly lined up, I thought – why bother?
But I eventually did try taking small steps in a couple of areas of my life and – well, I’ve seen such amazing progress; habits have been instilled in me, just by being consistent – NOT perfect, but consistent. And, not by doing anything TOO HUGE.
With regard to asking for help, start with something small like asking your children to make one meal a week. Or you could ask your partner to take turns doing the weekly cleaning.
Little things like this will free up your time and you will have more energy to focus on those things that will FILL you up, not drain your energy.
Four things to help you become the person who EASILY asks for help
(And then…becomes the person who is free from overwhelm AND has more time and energy.)
I’ve been doing these 4 things…research shows that when you do them daily (or most days), it will help you with your own confidence AND help you make and stick with changes that you want to see in your life!
Doing these 4 super easy things leads to being a more calm and resilient person – a person who has energy to do the things she wants to do.
- Intention Setting
Don’t forget to download these free sheets to help with feelings of overwhelm and increase your energy. This will remind you WHY you should ask for help. There are also some journaling prompts included!
We all want to beat overwhelm and have more energy!
During midlife, it’s important for us to take care of ourselves if we want to continue to be able to do things we enjoy, stay healthy, be active, and take on new pursuits.
Make it a priority to ask for help – in your personal and professional life – you will see your energy improve and overwhelm will be minimized!
If you know me, you know I only promote things that are simple to put into practice! I’ve avoided things for many years because I thought it would be too hard, take too much effort, or just not work for me. I’m here to tell you firsthand that there are EASY things you can add to your daily routine to bring a sense of peace and calm into your life.
Shoot me an email (just hit REPLY) if you’d rather connect that way. I’d LOVE to hear from you!