Feeling Highly Overwhelmed? 6 Ways to Stay Calm

By Helen Holmes on February 27, 2018

There are events and situations in life that make us extremely overwhelmed. It could be some unexpected news, a family emergency, or a highly stressful incident. In times like this, we can easily lose our control and become severely anxious.

The good news is – there are many ways to calm down quickly no matter how stressed or overwhelmed you are. Below are 6 simple tips to lessen the anxiety during highly stressful situations:

1.       Breathe deep. When you’re overwhelmed, you tend to grasp for breath. This is because your muscles are so tensed that the flow of oxygen in your body is hampered. Deep breathing is one good way to calm down as it relaxes your muscles, improves blood circulation, and relieve the tension. This is a method that you can do anytime, anywhere. 

2.       Have some walk. Confronting the situation isn’t always the best immediate step in facing stressful situations. When you feel so overwhelmed, it can be beneficial to go out and take a walk. Walking, as a form of physical exercise helps relieve stress allows your brain to release endorphins which works by brightening up your mood. Walking with a friend, relative, or someone close to you will help you return easily to your old self – someone who’s more positive and relaxed. Taking a walk will also give you more time to think and reflect more intelligently.

3.         Develop positive thinking. The way we think greatly affects the way we react and deal with different situations. Being optimistic reduces the chance of feeling too overwhelmed even if you are faced with difficult circumstances. Learn how to look at life in a brighter perspective. Doing so will help you become more open-minded. As a result, you will easily understand things as they are and won’t be too much affected when unexpected events happen.

4.       Clear your mind from worries. The more you think about the problem at hand, the more things get complicated. When you’re too overwhelmed, try to shift your thoughts to something good and positive. Think of your dream holiday or imagine being somewhere peaceful and beautiful. This method might be hard to do at first but with practice, you will learn how to easily divert your thoughts.

5.       Learn progressive muscle relaxation (PMR). These involve bodywork and techniques aimed to relax your body and relieve stress. Once you have become familiar to it, you will learn how to calm down in seconds. A professional therapist will be able to teach you how to execute PMR techniques.

6.       Be with cheerful people. Highly positive individuals are very contagious. Even if you’re feeling down and low, seeing another person smile will make you smile too. According to Dr Iacoboni, author of ‘Mirroring People: The Science of Empathy and How We Connect with Others’, being with happy people will eventually make you feel happier. 

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