7 Ways To Take Better Care Of Yourself When You're Totally Overwhelmed

You can get through this!

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Sometimes life just seems too hard and stresful. Sometimes it just can be overwhelming. And, if it were an option, you would just take off and go somewhere far away where no one knows you and you can just be for a while. Have you ever had those moments? They really stink!

Maybe you feel you are in a situation where you feel completely powerless. Maybe you want someone or something in your life to change and you instinctively know that it is not possible. Yet you continue to keep trying to change that situation. You bargain with it, plead with it, attempt to manipulate it, all to no avail. That’s when life feels really hard!


RELATED: How To Practice Daily Self-Care (Even When It Seems Like Life Is Way Too Hectic)

What if it wasn’t your job to change anyone or anything in the first place? What if all you had to do was take care of you? That may feel odd to many, especially those in the caretaking roles. However, it is true. Like they say in that old “oxygen mask” adage — you can’t help anyone else unless you have your own mask on.

It is also important to weed out when its OK to help or guide someone and when it’s not. A good litmus test is that when the person is capable to do it themselves, then let them. If not, then it is appropriate to assist.


Sometimes we feel that we know best for those in our lives, but that is so not true. Only they know what’s best for them.

So when life is feeling super hard and you just want to take off, here are some tips to help you “stay in your own lane” and not feel so overwhelmed:

1. Focus on yourself.

Rather than focus on the troubled area in your life, focus on you. Think about what is most important to you or what you have been neglecting in yourself or your life and take some actions to move towards what you want.


2. Do something fun.

When life feels super stressful, you may not even remember what’s fun for you anymore. Sit with yourself and think about what used to bring you joy and do it. It may be as simple as reading a book that you have been meaning to.

3. Up your personal self-care.

Take a relaxing bath or a nap. Get a manicure or pedicure, massage, or facial. Whatever feels good for you.

4. Journal your feelings.

Journaling is a great way to get those conflictual feelings on to the piece of paper instead of holding them in your body. Tension in the body can make you sick. If you’re not comfortable to write your feelings down, then talk them out to an imaginary person or a trusted friend.

RELATED: 10 Simple Ways To Take Care Of Yourself (If You're Having A Rough Month)


5. Retreat.

Take some quiet time for you. Plan a day to retreat in your own home or get away somewhere special where you can just be without having to leave your life permanently.

6. Quiet the mind.

The overwhelming chatter of the mind keeps us more unfocused and more overwhelmed. Spend some time in quiet contemplation and notice what comes up for you. That perfect solution to an issue you have been having may miraculously appear.

7. And don’t forget to breathe.

We have a tendency to hold the breath when we are feeling overwhelmed and anxious. Make a conscious effort to breathe deeply in order to move the fear and anxiety out of your body.


There are benefits for everyone when you decide to take care of you. When you give yourself permission to take care of you, you give others in your life the same. You also show them that you are important and that you matter. Those around you begin to treat you as if you matter. You won’t feel taken for granted. Ultimately, those overwhelming problems and feelings will subside and a renewed sense of purpose will arise.

RELATED: 25 FREE (!!!) Ways To Treat Yo Self To A Little Self Care TODAY

Catherine Anesi, founder of The Lighthouse Wellness And Retreat Center, is a licensed clinical social worker, Reiki Master, and a Transformational Group and Retreat facilitator with a specialty in aiding people to make the changes required to transform their lives. Reach out to her for a virtual consultation by contacting her here.