How to Handle Overwhelm When You Don't Often Get Overwhelmed
I, like you my friend, am a strong, highly achieving woman who handles stress really well. Yet, an inner battle wages within me between my dark and light. Generally my light wins the day. Yet every now and then the dark takes over for a time and I cry, melt down, or feel like an utter fraud and failure. Of course I am not those things. They are not my truth. Oh but do they pull me down when I let them.
This happened to me recently when I let my fears and doubts hide my sparkle. I was emotional, battered, and sounded like an entitled teenager who wasn't getting her way. Eventually I had to pull my head out of my ass and get on with the good work of my life.
I wrote the following letter as I was resetting and share it here today in hopes that it will resonate with you and inspire you to shift your focus and get on with the amazing things you are here to do.
I like to think I don’t get overwhelmed easily. And really, I don’t. I am strong, confident and can persevere through just about any challenge the Universe throws at me.
I keep my overwhelm at bay most days. Until… someone asks me a real heart felt question and authentically cares about me and what I’m going through.
Then, the tears emerge, I forget to breathe, I feel ok and not ok at the exact same time.
I’m good at putting on a brave face. I’m good at getting shit done. I’m good at making a plan.
And most of the time my plans never come through the way I plan. My husband is a master at making a plan and it coming through seamlessly. That’s just not the way I roll apparently.
So, when that plan doesn’t come through I am flexible. I adjust. Eventually I get frustrated. I wonder why God sent me on this errand and why it’s so freaking hard for me to make anything of it. I have breakdowns where I bawl my eyes out which feels cathartic and helps me release the pent-up pain and suffering I’ve been holding onto.
And then I move forward again.
All the while I put myself through this roller coaster of overwhelm and calm, I have one north star.
I trust. 🌟
I have enormous faith that God, Divine Mother, Universe, my guides and angels are supporting me and moving me in the right direction. Sure, my hard head gets in the way at times. Then I put my mind and ego back in its place and come back to my heart.
For my heart loves me for being me. My soul, God bless her, never gives up on me. She guides me always.
I didn’t always trust in it all so much. I resented God in my teen years. I was oddly scared of the Divine power in my 20s. I tapped into the loving presence of her in my 30s. And in my now 40s she has asked me to do the unthinkable. To surrender fear. To put fear down. Apparently, I don’t need it anymore. That’s what she’s told me anyways.
I’ve been trying for the past two years to do this in earnest. I’ve been practicing. But how do you put down something you’ve clung to for 40 years? Fear has been my companion and my motivator. Fear has kept me “safe” and prevented me from getting hurt.
Has fear really helped me?
I’ve been hurt. I haven’t always felt safe. You keep me from asking for help when others would gladly support me. Sure fear was there with me every step of the way but hidden just out of reach so I couldn’t always tell it was fear.
Damn you fear! You are so freaking sneaky.
Why have you been toying with me my whole life?
I’m worn out by your energy. The tug of war you play with my faith is exhausting. You tell me everything is ok, everything is “fine”.
Well, fuck “fine”. I’m meant for so much more.
The more I set you down, the more room I have to trust in my intuition and live authentically.
You’ve been a good teacher, in an ass kicking sort of way. So, thank you for that. I do appreciate what I’ve learned from you.
But, I don’t need or want you anymore. I want to be me. All of me.
And you simply aren’t who I am. I don’t have room for you anymore. I surrender you.
Without you leading my life I can be more present, listen to my heart, let love be my guiding light, serve more people.
That’s who I am.
I am a bright light here to serve through love and connection.
I am not meant to hid in the shadows like you do.
I am open, honest, caring and so damned courageous.
Without you my life is free, creative, bold and genuine.
I am committed to fulfilling my life’s purpose.
Without you in my life, overwhelm’s go nothing on me. I’ve got all the energy and vitality I need to live my life, all of it, fully and joyfully.
Let me close with a little Ho’oponopono-ing.
Fear, I love you. Really. I appreciate all you’ve done for me and all the lessons you’ve been trying to teach me all my life.
I’m sorry I haven’t always listened to you and the wisdom you were imparting, showing me where I had room to grow and room to let go.
Please forgive me for being so hard headed and irritated with you. You showed me where I could rise and I didn’t always want to.
Thank you for being a part of my life. Thank you for being my teacher. I’ve outgrown you now and I want you to know I’ve got this.
If you can relate to this journey of fear and overwhelm, leave a "That speaks to me" comment below.
Fear is our guide and teacher, when we can embrace and accept it. It is time for us to set down fear and shift our focus to the expansive nature of love. If you are ready for that journey we should talk sweet sister. The time is now.