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.
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 home just one extra 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!
It might also help to take a social media break. I like to choose one day a week that I stay logged out of Facebook and Instagram. It’s amazing how much calmer my mind and heart become when I do that.
Read More: How To Put the Phone Down So You Can Rest
#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 the copier refused to cooperate 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.
#7 Take Time To Rest
Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28
None of us are able to shoulder the burdens of life on our own. Find rest for your soul in the truth of God’s Word. Run to Jesus! It sounds counterproductive to stop when there’s so much to do, but nothing refreshes me more than a few minutes of quiet time in God’s Word.
I love to spend 15-30 minutes reading Psalm 119. If you’ve never done that, take the time to let those words soak into your soul.
Read More: How To Make God’s Word Your Counselor
2 thoughts on “When You’re Overwhelmed or Burned Out”
We’ve been working on #5. We’ll both recap our days when we get home together and then let any issues go. That helps us to enjoy our evenings together 🙂
That’s a great strategy!