Dealing With Overwhelm Before It Takes You Out

(Photo by Alexandru Goman on Unsplash)

This blog is about how to get your story out there. It's designed for filmmakers, writers, pastors, musicians, business and nonprofit leaders—anyone who has an idea or story burning in their heart that they need to share. But one of the greatest obstacles to getting your story out there is becoming overwhelmed with the process. It happens to me when I'm balancing too many things and get the sneaky suspicion that there's something important to do that I've forgotten about.

It usually comes when I haven't been paying attention to my priorities, am over-stretched and not taken a close look at my notebook. When that happens, I usually get a wave of negative feelings, I find it tough to concentrate, I can't write and feel like I have to get away. I can see a meltdown coming in the distance.

The bad news is that I hate that feeling. It eats away inside like cancer, and I feel completely helpless and anxious. The good news is that I know what causes it, so I can see it coming. As a result, I know what steps to take to alleviate it and get things calm again.

What about you? Have you taken the time to identify the red flags that lead you to become overwhelmed? Until you do, you'll continue to get caught in the death spiral, and it usually happens at the most inopportune times—in client meetings, before deadlines or in front of co-workers. Without intervention, over a period of time, these moments often lead to complete burn-out in a career.

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Note that I'm not talking about serious depression or anxiety issues. Those need to be dealt with through a qualified professional. I'm talking about those moments when you simply feel overwhelmed, have hit a wall and your creativity, productivity and output bottom out.

Know yourself. Learn to see it coming. Take the right steps to avert it. Because righting the ship during those challenging times can often lead to your greatest creative breakthroughs.

Share with our readers: When it comes to getting things accomplished, what are some of the things that overwhelm you?

Phil Cooke and co-writer Jonathan Bock are media producers and marketing professionals based in Los Angeles. They have just released their new book The Way Back: How Christians Blew Our Credibility and How We Get It Back from Worthy Publishing.

This article originally appeared at

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