One of the expressions we hear often from our clients these days, in reference to themselves and/or their team members, is overwhelm. Whether they say it or not, we definitely see it and also its consequence - inaction-- quite regularly. Another, (and perhaps more precise), word that describes what we see is 'unraveled.' "Overwhelm" is actually a fairly general word, a sort of "catch all" phrase. So what are people really saying when they use it? It could mean they are drowning, engulfed, rendered totally ineffective by decisive defeat or, at the least, impaired severely in spirit and health. If they are unraveled, we could also say they have fallen apart. Regardless of the precise wording, when people are in this state there seems to be no access to freedom, creativity, leadership, productive action, or even good health.
Since it seems to be almost epidemic right now, we thought we'd throw out the start of a recipe for getting beyond overwhelm and unraveling and ask you if you have some good ingredients to add to the mix.
1) Breathe - in particular, exhale. Take 10 deep, slow breaths several times a day to send the "all clear" signal to the part of your brain that is on alert and condemning you to fight, flight, freeze or appease thinking. Don't underestimate the power of this simple, and always available practice.
2) Re-examine "The New Rules" in our April 3rd posting.
3) Ask yourself "which, or how many, of The New Rules am I resisting?"
4) Identify where you are trying to hold on or what you are trying to hold on to. Pay close attention - are any of your pet beliefs being threatened?
5) Ask, "Am I willing to let go, to allow myself, the team, and events to unfold?"
6) Ask, "If I weren't afraid, what Yonder Star would I be pursuing?"
7) Ask, "What is the most impactful action I/we can take to forward progress in fulfilling our Yonder Star?"
8) Do it. Take action. Purposeful action will clear your brain, help clear the bad chemicals from your body, reconnect you with the people around you, and restore your spirit.
"The more we allow ourselves to unfold the less we are likely to unravel." - Irwin Kula, Embracing The Sacred Messiness of Life
What practices do you have for returning yourself to center, getting your focus back, and restoring yourself to purposeful action?