That’s a term often thrown about in the wrong context. I’ve heard girls use it when their best friend comes out of a dressing room looking incredible, “I’m overwhelmed how amazing you look!” (come on! Your friend is beautiful! Have you had Roy Orbison’s glasses on all this time?!)
I’ve heard it from girlfriends describing the wrongdoings of their partner, “I’m overwhelmed how despicably he’s treated me” (get over him darling. He’s obviously a rancid scrotum to treat you like that!)
The true definition of the word “overwhelm” can be likened to a lack of control - like an army overwhelmed by the enemy or the utter devastation you feel when someone leaves your life. Both of these contribute to a lack of control that you think you have not got.
I feel overwhelmed at the moment but actually I know I have total control so really “I feel deluged” is better. It’s like when you put your umbrella up in the torrential storm and your umbrella constantly flaps inside out and you’re already so saturated you wonder if there’s any point continuing to hang onto this useless contraption. You have control. We all have control.
Typically, I am spinning plates again. I like it. I like keeping busy, I like the adventure. However, there comes a time when you stop and become mindful of the space you’re in and listen to your own breathing and suddenly you are acutely aware of your situation. More than ever. Sometimes, that “overwhelming” feeling can smother you. Do you crumble and panic? Or do you inhale and march on defiantly?
I’ve crumbled recently but I marched on. I can feel myself crumbling again and I feel like sitting down in protest! However, now, I am strong enough to look at the situation, through my tears and shallow breathing, and realise I am not “overwhelmed” because I have the control, I have the power to change the situation and make it better. I am simply deluged and I need to find a solution.
How do you cope when you’re in a situation and you feel deluged? When you just don’t know which way to turn, what to do, how to solve a situation? The traffic lights are red and you think on it as you wait before someone beeps you to move on at the green light. You wake at 3am and the plaguing thoughts of what to do what to do what to do what to do stop you sleeping as you just lay blinking at the shadows on your wall. You’re making tea and suddenly you realise you’ve put the kettle in the fridge because you’re wondering what to do what to do what to do what to do what to do.
Over the past year I’ve found a solution to finding a solution! When I become deluged and my brain is overthrown with what to do what to do what to do what to do what to do….I don’t do anything. Literally. I just stop and move away, close that door, finish that conversation, go into a different room. Often when all you can think about is The Situation, it’s impossible to find a solution. Leave it, walk away for 5 minutes, for 1 day and do something else, talk about something else, change your scenery. Suddenly the solution flashes up in your face like a headlight blinding you on a dark night.
For me, I know this is really weird but, I have a shower or a bath. For some weird reason when I am deluged I retreat to my bath with my book, bath oils, a G&T, candles and my iPad. I switch off and relax. Suddenly, just switching off and not thinking about The Situation brings me an instant solution. It’s weird. Every time it happens when I have a shower or a bath! Perhaps it’s the steam or the total relaxation I get from being so warm and rejuvenated!
People say that though don’t they? “it’ll come to you, just stop thinking about it” or people say “when you’re not looking for love it’ll come”. It’s so true.
So this is exactly what I did. I have a situation at the moment where I feel so deluged and a bit lost and a bit emotional that I just don’t know which way to turn. I decided then to just close the door, change my scenery and not think about it. I suppose it’s a bit like burying my head in the sand but I’m not ignoring the situation, I’m just leaving it in in the oven for a few minutes longer while I have a bath! No one’s going to die. There’s no one banging on my door with an egg timer. I’m in control.
Changing my scenery and not immediately dealing with my situation has literally bought me a solution!! I got an unexpected phonecall that I wanted to receive a few days ago but never came. It was a phonecall that brought me so much relief and now I have a plan, I can see the light, I can see my situation becoming better. In time. I still feel pretty low and drained from the situation but that phonecall has really helped and I think had I have continued to immerse myself with worry and wondering and analysing, the solution would have had too much tangled weed in my brain to get through to me. Everything needs a clear path to get to you. Clear the way, clear your brain, allow solutions to come through.
Another example is one day I was again struggling with what to do about something. I had researched online, spoken to a couple of friends, even lay awake at 5am wondering what to do to the point where I was panicking and thinking “this just isn’t going to work out actually”. So you know what I did? I finished my tea and went to have my morning shower. I just stood still and let the almost-boiling water smother my face, eyes closed, letting the steam and the heat envelop me as I focused on my third eye (that’s the space inbetween your eyebrows - a good point to focus on when meditating). After a couple of minutes, I started shampooing and washing and suddenly, there it was! My solution! It just popped into my head from nowhere! I had the solution and it was practical and sensible and “why didn’t I think of it before?!”.
Believe me. If you have the time and the freedom, walk away, close the door, change your scenery and stop thinking about The Situation for a few minutes, a few hours or a whole day. Allow the solution to come through and it will. It always does. Then that feeling of “overwhelm” that you think you are getting vanishes. That then can only mean one thing: you never really were overwhelmed because you always have and you always will have the control. You were simply deluged.
You can do this. You are stronger than you think. Good luck and have a shower! x