Time Management

When You’re Overwhelmed or Burned Out

Overwhelm can come from lots of different sources – busyness, stress, financial pressure, sickness and more. I even find myself overwhelmed and burned out from living with myself and my sinful, wicked heart! Ever been there? I don’t like being overwhelmed or burned out and I imagine you don’t either!

Since we’re right at the beginning of the summer – yet dead in the middle of the year – I figured overwhelm might be something many of us are dealing with right now. Here are a few basic things you can do when you’re overwhelmed or burned out.

#1 Simplify

When things are overwhelming, it’s tempting to just avoid the situation. Example – the kitchen is an overwhelming disaster, so we decide to go to bed and deal with it in the morning. Instead of avoiding the mess, simplify your approach to the solution.

In the example of the messy kitchen, you could set the timer for 30 minutes and agree to go to bed when the time is up, or just take care of the dishes and work on the remainder in the morning. On a different note, this could mean simplifying supper preparations by implementing a menu rotation or a “one load a day” laundry routine.

#2 Stay Home

Home is where everything begins. It’s where my day starts and it’s where my day ends. Everything that we need to be successful during the day can be found at home: a good night’s sleep, clean clothes and good food. When my home provides all of those things, life goes a lot better.

It’s hard to take care of those basic needs if you’re never home. If there’s something you can take off your plate that would help you to be even just one night a week, do it!

#3 Change Something

Here’s a simple example. I found myself getting really irritated with trying to get from the house, to my car, and into work with all the stuff I had to carry. I switched out my purse to a larger tote style that holds so much more, and the problem was solved!

It’s amazing how those little annoyances and irritations seem bigger when we’re already overwhelmed or burned out. Bring a snack for the kid who’s always starving when he gets in the car. Wear comfortable shoes on the day you have to be on your feet for a while. Change something!

#4 Stop Comparing

Other people might seem to have an easier life, but nobody has a perfect life. We have been given a life sifted through the loving hands of an all knowing God. Comparison is rarely based on truth and is always destructive. If you find yourself in the comparison trap, turn on some worship music and change your focus to the Truth!

#5 Stop Complaining

After a few weeks of letting little things really irritate me and wear me out, I made a decision: once I entered the door of my house, I was not going to repeat anything that irritated me from the day. There’s nothing to be gained from re-hashing how someone cut me off or how something didn’t go the way I wanted at work. It’s amazing how much more peaceful my evenings became!

#6 Accept Help

If someone offers to bring you a meal, accept it. If you are overwhelmed with an organizing project but don’t know where to start, ask a friend who loves labeling things for a suggestion. Ask your spouse and/or kids to pitch in and fold a load of towels. It can be hard to accept help (and things might not be done exactly how you’d do them), but it makes a difference when you’re at your limit.


Whatever overwhelming situation you find yourself in today, remember that you are not alone! ❤

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16 thoughts on “When You’re Overwhelmed or Burned Out

  1. Love this post! It’s amazing how little things can make a HUGE difference! Life isn’t the easiest at times, but there’s usually a way to make it more bearable. Staying home and asking for help are two great ways to ease the burden. Time is a precious commodity, so it’s important to make the best use of it! Hope things are going well for you and that too many drivers don’t cut you off.

    My sister and I had a scary experience backing out of the driveway last weekend. Cars were parked on both sides, and this SUV whips down the street and actually drives up into a neighbor’s driveway to weave around us (we had to stop in the middle of the street and wait for him to get by), rather than wait for us to back up and straighten out. It was a little heartstopping, as we thought the SUV was going to hit my sister’s car. And he smiled as he did it! People can be so infuriating. We said a prayer in hopes that no one else would be endangered by the guy’s driving. Sometimes, all you can do is pray! 🙂

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  2. Love all these tips! My favorite is probably change something. I use that a lot as a mom – change my attitude, change my perspective, change my location or change my approach. All help me to be more positive. Stop comparing is something I have to practice daily. It’s so easy to see another mom, wife or a person on social media and start comparing their life to mine. It rarely makes me feel good so I have to remind myself often to stop comparing and appreciate what I have and the situation that i’m in.

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  3. Wonderful tips, Whitney!! I loved “simplify your approach to the solution.” That works so well for me. And change something … just common sense, yet how often we overlook it. As you said, if you know someone is going to be starving when they get in the car, bring a snack! If you know your day is going to be crazy, whether in or out of the home, plan a crockpot meal. There are so many common sense ways to plan ahead and alleviate those stresses and annoyances.

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    1. I think we just assume that if something is annoying or frustrating, that’s just life and we’re doomed to suffer with it forever. I believe in controlling what I can control, so I can cope with what I can’t control.

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  4. Great advice Whitney. I especially like teh STAY HOME. People today are just too busy. I think of the song by Alabama called I’m in a Hurry and Don’t Know Why. Slow down, enjoy your home and let yourself relax a bit.

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  5. These are all such great tips Whitney! I totally believe simplifying can improve so many things. Falling into complaining can be such a huge trap….it’s just a bottomless pit. Once I change my perspective and stop focusing on the negative I can usually pull myself together!

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