On top of the stress of your everyday life – family, job, finances- you also witness world events like Ebola, terrorist assassinations and devastating tidal waves in real time. This can be overwhelming to your emotional, physical and mental well-being. As an Intuitive Counselor, I work with many people who are dealing with feelings of frustration and helplessness, caused by overwhelming events in their lives or in the world.
Men and women often come to me questioning why they feel ill or tired, or why they feel emotionally drained and absent. The first thing I do is help them recognize their feelings and acknowledge them because they are real. And then we start to work to help them “take back” their lives.
With today’s vast information systems, you exist in a much smaller world than you may realize. You must filter through tremendous amounts of information about war, disease, death, and natural disasters. Your filters typically experience an event or information as something immediately in front of you. Thusly, you experience overwhelm because you have no caution signal reminding you that it is happening thousands of miles away.
Most of the world uses the collective belief that what we perceive with our five senses is more accurate than the unseen. However, based on the quantum physics finding that an atom is less than 1% matter and over 99% space, we now understand that the world’s reality is largely unseen. I believe the attitude of “it can only be true if we see it, taste it, touch it or hear it” has run its course and in order for us to be empowered, we have to reprogram a new belief set that includes the non-literal.
I personally experienced overwhelm when my mother began her transition off this planet. After dealing with a migraine for a few days, I heard that she had taken a turn for the worse. My mother lived 1,000 miles away, was in pain, afraid, and there was nothing concrete I could do to help her. Much of my conscious self believes this was the reason I had the migraine, supporting the idea that the distance between an event and ourselves makes no difference in our reactions or feelings to the event. When you see an assassination on the web or the devastating effects of a tidal wave, your mind sees it as something you are directly involved with and you react accordingly.
Experiencing our World Differently
When you assess the world only through your five senses, you allow for a small percentage of what is truly going on to be considered. By opening your mind to recognize that much of what is happening is unseen, you allow for an expanded interpretation of life, therefore opening up possibilities to experience what is happening around you in a very conscious way. If you change your belief system from “I effect only what I touch, to “my effect on the world is far reaching,” you have real potential for manifesting peace within yourself and in the world. As you integrate the idea that your belief structure plays a large part in the manifestation of your reality, it can become easier to manage your world from a peaceful place. When you are inclusive of the unseen as you manage your everyday life, you allow for an enormous opportunity of harnessing the power of your mental, emotional, physical and spiritual capabilities. This provides a degree of relief in that you have more power than you realize to deal with any situation, and the power to change a situation.
Tools to Manage Overwhelm
As mentioned before, much of your overwhelm comes from your reactions to events. It also can occur when you experience a “what if…” scenario that causes anxiety about what could happen. If you react to a current stressor with a conscious response, you can take care of the situation and move forward with your day. Some tools I offer my clients in managing feelings of overwhelm include becoming and staying in the present moment. You can pull your focus into the present by:
- Pay attention to your breathing. Shallow breathing is a very common result of an overwhelmed reaction. Concentrate on exhaling fully without pushing too hard; this insures the next inhalation will be as full as possible. Taking 3 full breaths, 3 times a day can do wonders for your overall well-being.
- Become aware of where your thoughts are in relation to time. Become aware that you may be reacting as you have in the past and that reaction may not be a part of your current reality. Simply saying to yourself, “I am here…safe…now,” can bring you to the present.
- Stop listening to/watching/reading the news. I say this tongue in cheek, but am also serious. If people would spend their day focusing on what is in front of them and start taking in the news as a secondary aspect of their lives, they would feel a lot less overwhelmed.
Managing overwhelm is a daily practice yet one that offers great rewards. You create your reality through your perceptions, actions and beliefs. If you remember to be present with a curious open mind, you can create a more harmonious energy that heals yourself and the world.