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Episode 33: Overcoming Overwhelm (Simplified Soul Care #2)

In a world that prizes what we do far more than who we are, feeling overwhelmed can feel like the status quo and even validating—while feeling relaxed means you’re not working hard enough. But that kind of thinking is wreaking havoc on our bodies and our minds. When our bodies whisper, “I can’t do this anymore” and we actually listen, when we set boundaries around what we need instead of piling more on our plates, we begin to beat back the feelings of overwhelm we were never made to carry. If you’re finding yourself weary and burned out, this episode’s for you—Emily will take you by the hand, help you slow down and find actual ways you can carve out some space to care for yourself. Because when you believe the world actually benefits when you care for yourself, that feeling of overwhelm will become far less all-consuming.

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4 Ways to Tackle Overwhelm Each Day: 

  1. Embrace the idea of being “present over perfect.” Perfection is impossible. Start focusing on the happiest moments of each day instead of trying to be the flawless version of yourself (hat tip to Shauna Niequist for this idea!).

  2. Say yes to helpers. Part of being connected with someone is being vulnerable enough to ask for help in big and small ways. Are you going on vacation soon? Ask a coworker if you can put their contact information on your Out of Office message. Is your week filling up with out-of-town visitors and unexpected projects from your boss? Time to fire up the food delivery apps!

  3. Give yourself permission to slow down. Slow down, step back, and just be still for a few minutes. Put on relaxing music, put on a meditation from the Calm app. Do a brain dump. Clear your mind for a few minutes and let your body slow down.

  4. Say no, even when it’s scary. Think about everything that’s on your plate. Is there something that can go? Something that’s standing in the way of the life you really want? It may be scary to let it go, but if it’s better for your mental health, it’s worth it overall.

Thought-Provoking Quotes

Here's the thing: I don't talk about getting organized and trying to enjoy what matters most because I've got it all figured out. Actually it's quite the opposite. I talk about this stuff because I'm in it too.”  Emily Ley 

“The things that we're self-conscious about prevent us from connecting with other people. And when we prevent ourselves from connecting, we are not living with the joy and freedom we were created to have.”  Emily Ley 

“You weren't made to do everything perfectly by yourself. Part of being in an authentic connection with someone is being vulnerable enough to ask for help. It's rewarding for both of you.”  Emily Ley  

“Feeling overwhelmed almost feels more normal than feeling relaxed, because you might think that feeling relaxed means you're not working hard enough. But I wonder what our lives would look like if we normalized a feeling of ease? Instead, I wonder if we'd feel more content if we let go of what we thought our lives should look like and embraced what matters to us.”  Emily Ley  

“You can't experience simple joys when you're living life with your hair on fire. When your brain is reciting and rehashing your to-do list, you can't enjoy the warmth of an afternoon breeze when you're clamoring to get inside because you have so much left to do.”  Emily Ley 

“Sometimes it's hard to listen to that voice that says, I can't do this anymore. I've never regretted it when I acted on that voice. My family is happier and healthier because I made that decision and most importantly, so am I.”  Emily Ley 

A Blessing for Your Week

May you give yourself the grace to reach for a life that is slower and sweeter. 

May you allow yourself to receive help with open palms and a full heart. 

May you give yourself one of the most loving and valuable gifts of all—time and space to care for yourself. 

Simplicity Tip of the Week

One of the reasons so many of us feel overwhelmed is because we lack boundaries, AKA the ability to kindly say, “I can’t help you with that, because this is what I need.” So this week, I want you to start educating yourself. Go follow accounts on Instagram like therapist Nedra Tawwab. Read the book Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend. You may be surprised by what you learn about yourself, that perhaps you’re giving too much of yourself away and you’re able to serve the people you love a bit more when you take care of yourself first.

Build a Life You Love!

Get Emily’s latest book, Growing Boldly: Dare to Build a Life You Love, wherever you buy books!

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