By Valerie Carr CHC, CLC

Have you ever felt overwhelmed? When there is so much going on in your life that you have no idea where to turn or what to do next?

Stress and responsibilities that overwhelm us make virtually everything in our life seem like more than we can handle. When we are overwhelmed, even the goals we have set to better our situation, suddenly become a burden. We disappointingly view our dreams as one more thing on our “to-do” list.

Unfortunately, this is where sabotage finds an in and begins to destroy the hard work and efforts we have put forth, by setting in doubt. When our goal seems unattainable, because it’s buried beneath stress and responsibilities, we begin to flirt with quitting. We experience doubt and question whether it’s too much and more than we can handle. The overwhelming feeling of confusion becomes so great the best thing we feel we can do is to quit. However, just maybe, right then at that moment, we are about to experience our breakthrough. By succumbing to the emotions of overwhelm and choosing to quit, we miss the opportunity to find out what comes next.

Overwhelm is often a product of over-commitment. We add and take on more and more responsibilities without evaluating whether we have the time to devote the proper attention to each new obligation. By taking on too much at one time, we can neither honor our own desires nor adequately attend to our duties. Overwhelm and over-commitment may not always be a product of our agendas and schedules. Sometimes, we become bogged down with commitments due to an unforeseen event. Regrettably, it is often the unexpected that can throw us into turmoil, more than the expected.

It is essential to understand and accept that on the road to pursuing change, life is full of detours and speed bumps. How we handle these roadblocks determines how we succeed. Avoiding them or steering around them in an attempt to make the route more comfortable, more often than not produces a longer, harder way. When we face speed bumps in life head-on with resolve and courage, we find resilience and strength we never knew we had. By taking steps today to analyze and overcome your feelings of overwhelm, you free your mind and spirit to continue to pursue what dreams and goals you desire.

Overcoming overwhelm may require you to analyze what you’ve been allowing to take space in your life and begin to make alterations. It may require you to stretch your comfort, your perseverance and your determination as never before. But, don’t forget, it is in the challenging and trying times that our character is not only tested; it is defined.

I have listed five steps for you to begin the process of overcoming overwhelm and taking back control from sabotage that has led you to believe there’s nowhere to start.

5 Tips to Help You Cope
1. Breathe! Take deep, long, cleansing breaths and slow your thoughts down. By slowing down, we often find clarity.

2. Write! Dump every racing thought you have on to paper. Writing creates a visual, and that visual provides a tool to organize and compartmentalize our thoughts. By clearing our minds, we often see that what we thought was beyond our capabilities is much more manageable in the end.

3. Don’t Eat the Elephant in One Bite. Break your ultimate goal, idea, or dream into smaller goals to focus on. These smaller goals are more achievable, less overwhelming and continue moving you in the right direction.

4. Honor Your Yes and No. Taking on too much responsibility can cloud our vision. By accepting that we have limitations, we can then accept commitments that are in alignment with our capabilities.

5. Give Yourself Some Slack. Ease up on yourself and your time frame. Allow the process to take its time. By relieving pressure, you allow for things to open and happen more naturally.


Valerie Carr CHC, CLC is a functional nutrition and wellness coach who works with women to overcome sabotage and limited beliefs in order to achieve health, weight, and life goals. She can be reached at and at If you are ready to take back control of your life and stop sabotaging behavior, download my free E-book, From Sabotage to Success, at