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Lifting Overwhelm Off Your Shoulders

Counseling for overwhelm, overwhelm therapy fayetteville nc, Carolina Counseling Services North Fayetteville Office Fayetteville NC, CCS, Overwhelm

Lifting Overwhelm Off Your Shoulders


“… life can feel hard. Really hard sometimes. The daily stuff of our own individual lives — the Adulting and Humaning we’re all called upon to do each and every waking day — isn’t always fun, glamorous or easy,” writes Annie Wright in an article about “humaning and adulting.”


Don’t we all feel this way at one time or another once we enter adulthood? Becoming a responsible adult and human being brings with it so many challenges, that it is easy to succumb to overwhelm. There’s the personal dream you want to chase, a career goal you are determined to accomplish, a family to take care of, children to raise, perhaps a marriage or relationship you wish to nurture, and a whole lot more, and a limited time to achieve them all. Not willing to sacrifice any facet of your life, you may be driven to “bite off more than you can chew.”


What can contribute to your adult life being more difficult? Emotional overwhelm.


What Is Emotional Overwhelm?

Emotional overwhelm is the feeling you get when you seem to have a “full plate” day after day. Good Therapy says that it is “a state of being beset by intense emotion that is difficult to manage, can often affect a person’s ability to think and act rationally or perform in an efficient and functional manner.”  You have no time to relax and all you can think of are the laundry, the children, parenting and being a good wife or husband/father. Overwhelm at work can mean bringing home the work load from the office or working through the night to meet a deadline. It is the feeling you have when it seems like nothing else matters, but the tasks at hand. It can give you the feeling of burnout, of being tossed about inside a small basket, and of perpetual weariness in your mind and your whole being.

Emotional overwhelm can cause the processes of “adulting and humaning” to be doubly difficult. It often sets in when everything seems to happen all at once. When change and transition occur without warning, such as a death/serious ailment in the family, loss of job, divorce, or parenting issues with a teen child. When these things are happening simultaneously and quickly, there is very little time to process your emotions. You may respond to these events in unpredictable ways, sometimes making blunders and committing more unpleasant repercussions than you intend.

It can happen to anyone. If you are the ambitious, perfectionist type, you could be living in the fast lane. Your tasks can run amok, not knowing what hit you. If you are the shy, introverted type, you may absorb everything around you, slowly filling you up until “the cup runs over” and you cannot absorb anymore. Even when you are a “regular type of guy,” you may still become overwhelmed when a change demands a transition that you are not fully prepared to do or give. This could be the feeling you may have after the birth of your first child, a job promotion, a new business, or a change of residence.


What’s Behind Your Overwhelm

Change is constant and as natural as breathing and eating. After a change, some adjustments need to be made to be able to survive the challenges it brings. While some people can adjust well to these changes during a transition period, having a full plate can be more demanding. If you are a single mom, working for a living is most likely another of your many tasks. As you struggle to keep your job, many things can happen that can challenge your time management, focus and determination. While a job promotion may be wanted, it can shake your personal relationships and other concerns.

The kind of overwhelm and the degree that it can affect you may not be the same as the next person.  This is partly because your threshold level is different. Your personality, preferences, strengths and weaknesses are also unique. Therefore, your responses to the challenges that change and transition bring can also be incomparable. Know, however, that all people have a “breaking point.” At a certain level, it can happen to you, despite your resilience.  This is why you need to seek help long before you reach that “breaking point.”

Overwhelm also happens because emotions are not always easy. When faced with a number of difficulties, you can become vulnerable to emotional overwhelm. Apart from the physical aspect of taking on multiple tasks, there are also feelings that can weaken you and your “spirit” to forge ahead or take away that “win ‘em all” attitude. Things can become more complicated once you are overwhelmed as your mind may not work in full precision. Everything you do can be “half-hearted.” With counseling, you can begin to understand your emotions, and you can choose how to react to a challenge or issue.


Aggravating Overwhelm

Emotional overwhelm deserves attention. While a good number of people can shake their overwhelm with a little effort and support, a significant number may end up with worse emotional conditions. For one, it can impact your well-being. According to the American Psychological Association (APA), overwhelm among adults can significantly shake their physical and emotional health.

Overwhelm can aggravate or contribute to certain medical conditions, such as hypertension, diabetes, or heart disease. It can lower your immune responses, or you can become an “emotional eater.” It can trigger or complicate insomnia. APA also says that it is linked to emotional conditions and mood disorders, such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder. Abuse of substances is also a common issue associated with people struggling with overwhelm.

Aside from the usual work and family-related issues, the condition may also be triggered or complicated by attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Studies reveal that this condition can fundamentally cause adjustment to be more difficult because they perceive the “world to topsy-turvy.”  Dr. William Dodson explains that this is because the “Past, present, and future are never separate and distinct for people with ADHD… as those with ADHD experience life more intensely than neurotypicals … Everything is now and that can complicate everyday life, work, and relationships.”  


Lifting Overwhelm with CCS Counseling/Therapy

There are many reasons why your life can bring about emotional overwhelm. Just by being a responsible adult/human, you can be faced with so many challenges on a day to day basis. Do not take overwhelm for granted; it can cause you to be less productive in all your endeavors. It can similarly take a serious toll on your health, relationships, family, and/or career/job without you noticing it.

When your “plate is full,” pay attention. Talk to a counselor. With the help of an experienced counselor independently contracted with Carolina Counseling Services – North Fayetteville Office –  Fayetteville, NC, you can bring yourself into the moment. The right-fit counselor can assist you to process each experience, so you can be aware of the varied contributors of your overwhelm. This can be a good exercise in understanding what’s weighing down your ability to adjust. It can also effectively help you modify your perspective, so you can prioritize tasks, depending on their value in your life.

Remember, you can halt the power overwhelm has over your life. Though emotions cannot be completely regulated, with a little professional help, your counselor can guide you to respond well to your issues and challenges. Live with a little weight removed from your shoulders. Overwhelm is a good reason to seek counseling. It can be the help you need and with Carolina Counseling Services – North Fayetteville Office –  Fayetteville, NC, in the neighborhood, seeing a counselor is now more accessible.  Call now and start to resolve your issues.

Serving Areas: Carolina Counseling Services

Counties: Cumberland, Bladen and Sampson Counties, NC
Areas: Fayetteville NC, Ft Bragg NC, Pope Field NC, Sliver City NC, Linden NC, Bowmore NC, Autryville NC, Bunnlevel NC, Erwin NC, Dundarrach NC, Pineview NC, Rex NC, Lemon Springs NC, Johnsonville NC, Eastover NC, Stedman NC and Wade, NC
Zip Codes: 28311, 28395, 28390, 28356

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Carolina Counseling Services – North Fayetteville Office, Fayetteville, NC

422 McArthur Road, Suite 2
FayettevilleNC 28311

Our Mailing Address:

PO BOX 9909
Fayetteville, NC 28311

Choose your Therapist

  • Becky Clark, MSW, LCSW

    Specializes in: (Ages 18+) Anxiety, Depression, Individuals, Couples, Geriatrics, Criminal Justice, Stress Management, Loss and Grief related to death, disability, divorce, deployment, “empty nest”, retirement and other major life transitions
    Insurance: BCBS, Tricare, Medicare, and Cash

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    Location: Fayetteville, NC