I don’t necessarily dwell on things for too long however when they linger past their welcome, I look a bit deeper to find out more. Usually it has everything to do with my intuition and just how much I would’ve gone against it in particular situations or decisions. I am still in a process of mastering my inner voice and listening to the gentle nudges I receive from the Universe. The feeling of overwhelm is how I know I went too far and went against what is right for me.
I know it will take me a lot more practice to truly tune into my intuition – I really wrecked it over the years believing that there was no such thing as a ‘gut feel’ and that unless I could explain everything in a logical manner, then it’s not good for me. I think it must have been during this time that I developed a yearning to be liked and accepted beyond the healthy measures. I believe it’s directly tied to the challenge of saying ‘No’ in certain circumstances.
So what happens when we are so hardwired for answers that we don’t even realise we are going against ourselves? I believe it’s in these moments that we trigger anxiety, overwhelm and stress responses in our bodies. Let that be the nudge you take to re-evaluate your decisions and tune into your body.
THE FEELING OF OVERWHELM
The last so many weeks have been extremely busy in my life and there have been a lot of ‘shiny new objects’ being flashed at me. You know the kind that sound really exciting, you can see it on the person’s face as they are telling you about it yet you can feel it in your gut that it’s not for you. But what you know, I still said ‘yes’ and gave them a ‘try’. Time spent on these endeavors is time I will never get back…
I fell into that trap because I am still struggling with the concept of saying ‘No’. Setting boundaries is getting harder and harder even though I thought I was getting better at it. And then it dawned on me – I am looking at my opportunities from the good old childhood hang up of scarcity. It’s that mindset that I’ve been working on for years and in times when I am tired or overworked, it creeps in again only to undermine me real good. I don’t think this mindset work will ever be over…at least not for now.
It’s hard to shake what you perceived and believed in your childhood – no doubt that these first cognitive memories influence our decisions today and therefore the fundamentals of our mindset.
Knowing what I know today makes it easier to reprogram my mind and create new healthy habits for how I want to live my life. But from time to time that feeling of missing out creeps in, especially when I am presented with an opportunity that at first glance seems amazing. It’s exactly in these moments where saying ‘No’ seems almost impossible. I keep telling myself not to dismiss things before giving them a try but then just how many new things can I truly road test before I fall into my bed exhausted.
The more tired I am at the end of each day, the more things I said ‘yes’ to that are not serving me. Filtering, cutting, sorting and saying ‘No’ are practices I’ll be inviting into my life more often…
THE TRAP OF FAME
I think my mindset challenge isn’t far off from the aspiration of so many people wanting to become famous or more likable. Fame used to rank low as life’s ambition for most people. In a 1976 survey that asked people to list their life goals, fame ranked fifteenth out of sixteen. By 2007, 51 percent of young people reported that being famous was one of their top personal goals.*
There is this outside validation again that so many people seek only to be feeling empty again soon after. Such a vicious cycle, don’t you think?
Social media amplifies this divide even more in the form of ‘likes’ or number of followers you’ve got. In recent weeks a lot of my conversations with clients and friends were centered around comparison and the feeling of overwhelm with where they are right now. It is tough because not many people are willing to openly admit that what they post on social media is in reality just their highlight reel and maybe some of those followers they’ve got never interact with them online or offline. Connection is so important but it always starts with a genuine and honest connection with yourself.
CONNECTION WITH THE SELF
Do you really know what your true strengths and weaknesses are? And I am not talking about what other people are telling you but rather what you have discovered about yourself that makes you truly (honestly) happy or frustrated? The catalyst for my self exploration was Eckhart Tolle’s book: The Power of Now. It really changed my thinking about how I felt about myself moment by moment and I was able to reach ‘deep’ to create new memories from a place of re-framed action.
CREATING NEW MEMORIES AND NEURO PATHWAYS
The ‘Power of Now’ was my first introduction into mindfulness. Being more observant of my surroundings, discovering more about myself by being in the moment with myself also helped me create new memories, sensations and discover just how much more I can ‘feel’ than what I am allowing myself to feel. I was able to recognise my scarcity mindset, the so called ‘pain body’ that kept me trapped in the past, and further to that, kept me trapped in my past beliefs about myself.
Swapping out my thoughts that have been so ingrained into my mindset and creating new neuro pathways is the only way I was able to foster new healthy habits. My recent weeks of overwhelm and being overworked however are here to demonstrate that there is more work to be done around that pain body and fostering a more self loving lifestyle every day.
Next time you come across that feeling of overwhelm, slow down, look within and reframe your choices for more aligned decision making, no matter how big or small.
*Research source: ‘How Young People View Their Lives, Futures and Politics: A Portrait of ‘Generation Next’. The Pew Research Center For The People & The Press (January 9, 2007)’
Lots of love,
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