Overwhelm. Who hasn’t experienced it? For many, especially if you own your own business, it can be a daily occurance. You know the feeling — there is oh so much on the to-do list and I need to remember this and oh yeah I forgot about that how will I get it all done — barrage of thoughts. When this flood of ego-mind thoughts come rushing in it is often referred to as monkey mind.
I was recently reading one of Jack Kornfield’s books after my morning meditation practice and there was a paragraph that described the intense rush of thoughts and emotions as being akin to a monkey swinging wildly from branch to branch in a lush rainforest. I smiled at that image and thought to myself that when I am in overwhelm it is like a whole pack of monkeys going wild through the forest of my mind.
The #1 best thing you can do to overcome overwhelm and get more done is to STOP. That’s right, counterintuitive as it may be, stopping is the starting point for taming the beast and regaining a sense of calm, control and effectiveness. Then you need to get clear on what is really going on in your mind and body and what you do and do not want.
Nat at Prosperity Lighthouse has an excellent post on the 5 Steps to Getting Beyond Procrastination. In it he details the steps of one of the key systems I use myself and with my clients to overcome overwhelm as well as a wide variety of challenges. Here’s an important snippet from his article:
The next step is to identify what you do want. Most people don’t know what they want; therefore, they continue to attract what they don’t want. By identifying what you want, you are given a different focal point, rather than staying in the energy of what you don’t want. Whatever you focus on is what you get, so it is better to be clear on what you want so you attract more of that!
The next step is to ask yourself is “How will I feel once I have what I want?” The reason you want to become clear on how you will think you will feel is because ultimately this is what you wanted to feel in the first place. By tapping into these feelings, you are tapping into the energy that will carry you through the process.
Who actually wants to feel overwhelmed right? Yet we quickly and often plunge into a pool of overwhelm and can’t seem to get out. By stopping, bringing light to what IS happening and then making a conscious shift to what you DO want allows you to shift from victim of overwhelm to creator of your own experience in just moments.