Life is an endless flow of good times and bad times, successes and challenges. Some times it feels like a breeze and sometimes it's petrifying, while other times it can feel entirely overwhelming.
We all encounter situations where it feels like the odds are stacked up against us, there's too many challenges set out in front of us and we feel as though we don't have the capacity to overcome them all. But we can. And we do.
It's crucial that during these moments we remain focused, logical and realistic, for it's these things that will ensure we come out the other side as intact as possible. We are able to endure even the most difficult of circumstances by using reason and objectivity.
Acknowledge that you feel overwhelmed. It's ok to feel like you've got more on your plate than you can possibly handle, we all feel that way at some time or another. Accepting that you've reached your limit isn't a sign of weakness or failure, it's merely an indication that you're human.
Accept that there are things over which you have no control. No matter how determined, strong or capable you are, there are always going to be things that are out of your control. It's important to differentiate between which things you can control and which you can't. Once you know this, you'll be able to stop wasting your time, energy and mental strength on things that you're unable to influence the outcome.
Give yourself some time out. You can't solve all of your problems instantly, there's no magic fix. So take a little time out to pull yourself together. Go for a walk, hit the gym, meditate or head to the beach for a swim, do whatever you can to switch your mind off for a while. This will give you a chance to recharge, and head back into the situation feeling less overwhelmed.
Vent. They say "a problem shared is a problem solved" so talk to someone about how you're feeling. Offload all of the thoughts whirring around your head and get someone else's perspective on things. Aside from lightening your load by verbalising what's going on in your head, you'll also gain an outsider's insight on your situation which may result in you finding a solution or two.
Ask for help. There's nothing to be gained in trying to do it all alone and there's certainly no failure in asking for help. If you're struggling, reach out for help. Whether it be a loved one that can help ease your workload or a trained professional who can help you to cope better. Whoever it is that you turn to, it's ok to admit you're not handling things and you need a hand.
Make a plan. Don't get caught up focusing on all the challenges you have ahead of you, it'll only leave you feeling deflated and overwhelmed. Instead, focus on the solutions. Brainstorm for ways to improve your situation, map out a plan of attack and figure out the steps you need to take to achieve your goals. Logic and planning can drastically improve your mindset when you're faced with a whole range of different stresses.
Do something that lifts your mood. Distract yourself with something you find enjoyable for a while. Take a walk, visit the cinema, book yourself into the salon or hit the gym. Give yourself a break to indulge and take your mind off things. This will give your mind the chance to shut off for a bit and will allow you to return to your situation with a little more clarity.
List the positives. It can be easy to lose sight of the positives amongst all of the chaos but reminding yourself of the good stuff can help to keep you grounded during these difficult times. Make a mental note of the goodness that exists in your life and refer back to it often to keep yourself positive and motivated.
Have a laugh. Don't forget to have some fun when life gives you lemons. Find something to laugh at as often as possible. Laughing is an instant mood booster and humour can be a great coping mechanism when you're struggling through a difficult time.
Regardless of how much life throws at you, if you approach each situation with a level head, a solid plan, persistence and a little help from those around you, you'll have the ability to charge through any challenge that comes your way. Avoid letting the things you have no control over drain you of your optimism and energy by maintaining your focus on the things you can change. And never underestimate the benefits you reap from asking for help when you need it most.