Grief, depression, and helplessness are merely expressions of feeling overloaded or overwhelmed. Grief happens when you feel like there is no empowering meaning for something that has happened, or that your life is being negatively impacted by people, events, or forces that are outside your control. People in this state become overwhelmed and often begin to feel that nothing can change the situation, that the problem is too big—it’s permanent, pervasive, and personal. People go into these emotional states whenever they perceive their world in a way that makes them feel like there’s more going on than they can possibly deal with, i.e., the pace, amount, or intensity of sensations seems overwhelming.
The message of being overwhelmed is that you need to reevaluate what’s most important to you in this situation. The reason you’re overloaded is that you’re trying to deal with too many things at once, and you’re trying to change everything overnight. The feeling of being overloaded or overwhelmed disrupts and destroys more people’s lives than just about any other emotion.
- Decide, out of all the things you’re dealing with in your life, what the absolute, most important thing is for you to focus on.
- Now write down all the things that are most important for you to accomplish and put them in an order of priority. Just putting them down on paper will allow you to begin to feel a sense of control over what’s going on.
- Tackle the first thing on your list, and continue to take action until you’ve mastered it. As soon as you’ve mastered one particular area, you’ll begin to develop momentum. Your brain “will begin to realize that you are in control and you are not overloaded, overwhelmed, or depressed, that the problem is not permanent, and that you can always come up with a solution.
- When you feel that it’s appropriate to start letting go of an overwhelming emotion like grief, start focusing on what you can control and realize that there must be some empowering meaning to it all, even though you can’t comprehend it yet.
Our self-esteem is often tied to our ability to control our environments. When we create an environment inside our minds that has too many intense and simultaneous demands upon us, of course we’ll feel overloaded. But we also have the power to change this by focusing on what we can control and dealing with it a step at a time.
Tony Robbins. “Awaken the Giant Within.”