Trying to Take Control of Your Life? You’ll Have to Do This First

take control of your life

Fall is in full swing as the year is winding down. And what does that mean?

It’s about to get real… crazy.

We’re still in October, yet the Christmas decorations are already being put out. Like hello, Thanksgiving isn’t even up next, Halloween is!

Regardless, the holidays are coming and so is your deadline to make this year somewhat amazing. Not to mention all this would be piled up on top of your normal day-to-day duties.

Yup, things are about to get extra crazy, with it all coming fast.

So what do you do?

Becoming the Chaos

You know things are going to keep piling up. You can barely handle the load now.

And you just know more is coming down the pipeline.

It feels like the walls are closing in around you, rather quickly. So what do you do?

You allow yourself to be consumed by it, for it to cover you completely. It’s like you’re drowning in the deep end of the pool.

You panic for a little bit but ultimately you do nothing, and just watch it all spiral out of control. Desperately wanting to do something but feeling like you can’t do anything at all.

But you couldn’t be more wrong.

Getting Ready to Get It Together

I can understand how you can feel incapable of swimming to the top but you can get out of there.

Instead of immediately trying to tackle everything at once, give yourself a minute to get it together.

You have to mentally and physically prepare yourself for everything that you need to do.

You have to be cool, calm and collected so you can think and act clearly.

And allowing yourself to drown in stress is not where you want to be. It’s just not the proper launch pad to dive into your problems.

But this will help you calm your nerves and be equipped to take control:

1. Loosen up your muscles

When you get stressed your whole body gets tight. That’s how you instantly feel it.

You might even have that one spot that all the tightness and pain goes to.

For me, it’s my shoulders. When things get rough my stress builds up and sits right there.

And since I don’t have the luxury of having a masseuse on call, I had to figure out other ways to release the tension so that the pain didn’t balloon into a whole new problem.

So I started stretching. Nothing crazy, just a little something that I could do in my chair to get the blood flowing back in that area and loosen it up.

This made it easier to take on whatever caused it in the first place.

2. Get your heart rate up

When life is hitting you at a million miles a minute it can be hard to think straight or even act rationally.

It can get you to the point to where you just want to break something.

It’s a natural feeling you can have from time to time, especially when you’re so overwhelmed that you don’t know what else to do. But it’s not good to allow it to build up like that.

Exercising is a good way to release pent up frustration and aggression.

You might even get a great idea to solve your problem during cardio. Either way, you’ll be clear headed, calm and ready to take control.

3. Turn up the tunes

I love music. Personally, it’s my great escape.

It can completely alter my mood and take me away from the day’s problems, even if it’s only for 3 and a half mins.

Music just has that soothing ability.

It can be quite the motivator as well.

So when you feel like you need to have a certain type of attitude to take control, pop on a track that reflects that go get ‘em ‘tude.

4. Center yourself

When everything around you is spiraling out of control, your first instinct may be to drop to the floor screaming. But that isn’t going to help you one bit.

In fact, your lack of self control will probably make the situation worse.

Because not only will everything else be a mess, you’ll be lying there on the floor like putty while it continues to tumble.

Literally falling apart is the last thing you should do.

Meditating might seem impossible when your head is spinning, but times like that are when you need to me centered the most.

Meditation will help you to focus your thoughts and calm your out of control feelings.

Trust me, when you’re done it’ll feel like a weight has been lifted off of your shoulders. This will make the actual work easier to face.

5. Reconnect

It becomes easier to ignore texts and miss phone calls when you’re getting hit from all angles, but don’t. You need your peeps around.

No matter how crazy it gets take a few minutes to reconnect with friends and family, especially those who are checking in on you.

Let them know what’s going on with you, vent to them. You may not want to bother them with your problems but they could help you to find a solution that you’ve overlooked.

Besides, going out with them to a movie or a jumping around on trampolines could be just the distraction you need to hang on to your sanity.

6. Get your cheeks to hurt

What?! Pain?

Stay with me, this is the good kind.

You ever laughed so hard that your cheeks hurt? Like to the point where you wanted to stop because of the pain but couldn’t because something was just so damn funny?

Well, that’s the kind of pain you need right about now.

Whatever it is that tickles your funny bone until it hurts, find it and enjoy it…until you’re in pain.

You deserve a lighthearted (slightly painful) moment.

7. Look at the little things

When everything around you is falling to pieces it can be hard to see anything other than a mess. But there are little things buried underneath the rubble to acknowledge.

Look the silver lining, or just be appreciative of the other little things that are still intact.

Things are only that bad when you keep your focus on the negative.

8. Lie down

If the world is spinning out of control lying down is the best thing to do.

Not only is it the most conventional way to relax but it also allows you to catch a siesta.

And apparently sleeping is a good way to reset your nervous system. So whenever you’re feeling jittery, put yourself down for a nap.

You’ll awake renewed.

9. Day dream

Sometimes you just need the mental break.

Look out into the sky and think about a happy moment from yesteryear.

That blast from the past can help you to remember that life can be sweet. That this is temporary and once you get through it you can have moments like that again.

10. Ditch the jitter juice

Coffee’s you’re best friend right?

More like your frenemy.

When you’re caffeinated and you add stress into the mix it usually doesn’t fair well.

You imagine yourself being able to zip through everything without batting an eyelash. But the reality is you become an overstimulated nervous wreck.

Besides, you don’t need the caffeine, you need real rest (see #8).

11. Let go and take it in

At times, the best way to get lost is to immerse yourself in your surrounds.

Instead of running for the hills, take it in. Pay attention to what is happening. Become more aware.

Doing this will allow you to really see things for what they are and come up with a practical solution that works for it.

Grabbing the Reigns

You know that sitting there motionless while the stress of the world is piling on won’t do you a lick of good.

Jumping into it when you’re not ready will just lead to more, new problems on top of everything. And at this point you don’t need any of that.

When things become too much you have to make sure that you are in a good place before you can even try to deal with it all.

Gaining control of your life starts with you. If you’re not in the right place, you’ll never be able to take back the reigns. And you’ll always be a victim of circumstance. But that’s no way to live.

Take control by taking care of yourself first.

 

Tell me…

What’s the first thing you do when things get out of control?

 

 

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  • Hey Lea,

    Great advice here. I feel you on the stretching!

    I’ve been doing Yoga everyday since mid June of this year and I highly recommend it. I started doing it about 3 years ago, but I really got serious this year.

    Let me tell you, it gives you this great feeling of balance. Almost as if a lot of weight and stress has been lifted off of you. For me it works well for both physical and emotional thus far.

    Exercise is another great way to release stress. Good toning, breathing and cardio will help get rid of those toxins so that you can feel better about yourself.

    Thanks for the share Lea! Have a good one!

    • Lea

      Hey Sherman,
      That’s amazing! Reminds me of when I used to meditate more regularly. It was like magically I was at peace, even with the most stressful stuff.
      You make Yoga sound incredible. I’m so interested now 🙂

  • Chery Schmidt

    What a great post Lea! Power packed full of awesome tips on how to take control.. Loved them all… I do actually find myself doing quite a few of them LOL

    Great Share
    Thanks
    Chery :))

    • Lea

      Thanks Chery! Nice job! Glad I was spot on.

  • Hi Lea,

    Yes, the great roller-coaster is plunging onward. Goodness knows where the year went!

    I use yoga as my way to relax – I think this poor body would have ground to a halt without keeping it loosened up with my yoga practice.

    Just “switching off” is a wonderful thing to do, and things seem so much better when you come back to your “to-do list”. (Which I write on a bit of paper when things get really bad, because it’s so satisfying to physically cross things off.)

    Joy – Blogging After Dark

    • Lea

      Hi Joy,

      Isn’t it?! It always seems to fly by. Like it starts and then it’s over.

      I’ve heard so much about yoga but never officially tried it myself. You’ve got me considering it. It really is, I still jot stuff down for that very reason. I thought I was the only one. Just seeing it marked as done really helps.

  • Hi Lea,

    All excellent tips.
    I know this is a crazy time of the year. I decided a long time ago to keep things simple – throughout the holiday season and in life in general.

    I think that when the details pile up, it’s easy to get caught up in chaos. I just keep everything light and allow my feelings to communicate with me. I also enjoy spending some time in the kitchen while I have the Bee Gees station going on Pandora or just reading a book.

    • Lea

      Hi Dana,

      Good plan. I typically keep it plain and simple all year so I tend to get a bit carried away this time of year. But these help me to keep things in line. We have that in common, I love to listen to music while I’m cooking. Thanks for sharing what works for you.

  • Great advice Lea! A lot (if not most) of year end stress can be eliminated by planning ahead and having clearly defined goals for the 4th quarter – not just for work, but for family and the holidays as well. Thanks for the reminders and inspiration. 🙂

    • Lea

      Very true Marquita. I always like to plan. Some people think I’m too rigid because of it. Hey, it gets the job done… and keeps me sane.

  • Hi Lea,

    Oh boy..did I need to read this today! Life sue is hitting me in every direction due to the end year events. I took your advice and just went to lie down. Yes…while I was there at three in the afternoon after many phone calls and people pulling at me. I was day dreaming. I fell asleep and didn’t give cooking dinner for the family another thought. They won’t starve, so I let go.
    So here I am at 5 a.m. A time I never see …writing to you after a very long sleep and feeling refreshed and calm. Now I have more ways to live a stressless live with some other points here that you mention.

    Thanks so much Lea,

    -Donna

    • Lea

      Hi Donna,

      Then it was great timing, uh? 🙂 Oh, tell me about it. Just thinking about year end planning gets me a bit anxious. I’m so glad it worked for you. I usually take short breaks myself to lie down but it sounds like you got some much needed rest along with that reset. Glad to hear you’re calm and starting anew. Go get ’em!

  • Hey Lea,

    Life has ups and downs with that amazing happiness. People need to control their hurt beat. They should try to find the happiness in every little thing.

    Sometimes, it’s good to take a break from our work. We can’t just work like a robot. Give rest to the mind.
    Thanks for this wonderful article.
    ~Ravi

    • Lea

      Hey Ravi,

      There are surely great things around us. You just have to open your eyes to see it. But not only that, being content makes it easier to do things. Getting motivated is next to impossible when you’re overwhelmed.