The Overwhelm. So now it’s a noun? – SCN Encourager 9/17/2013
What English class did I miss?
All summer long I saw articles blaring away about “the Overwhelm.”
You probably spotted them, too. (Okay… long before I did!)
Titles like the ones below were plentiful.
Avoid the Overwhelm.
Manage your Overwhelm.
Stay fit despite the Overwhelm.
Defeat the Overwhelm.
Delegate away your Overwhelm.
(I hope that my superintendent only saw the top four, though.)
There are even books written about the Overwhelm.
I went on Amazon to find an example, and ta-duh! Right away this book by Millie Grenough popped up. It’s called “Oasis in the Overwhelm – 60 second strategies for balance in a busy world.”
I was going to attempt to be clever and joke about it – but it actually looks like a pretty good book. See for yourself.
When I read the author profile and found out that Millie is the Executive Coach and Clinical Instructor at the Yale School of Medicine, I’m glad I set aside my usual weirdness.
It’s always a good practice for the amateur encourager to salute the highly trained one.
Way to go, Millie!
But now… she’s also got me thinking.
I’ll bet that each one of us has been battling the Overwhelm for the last several weeks.
How could we not?
Just getting school started again is hectic enough, but when you pile on enrollment calculations, Common Core politicking, parent and student issues, newsletter and website deadlines, a busy fall sports season, scheduling mix-ups, various personnel matters, school board meetings and communications, and a ton of other items…
It would be fair to say that we’re all at risk of getting buried by the Overwhelm.
In some people the Overwhelm causes feelings of hopelessness and a fretful “to do list” panic.
How do I know?… since I obviously haven’t yet read Millie’s book or even earned my degree from Yale?
I’m glad you wondered about this.
I heard a psychologist on yet another radio show.
The psychologist reported that the people who are the best at coping with the Overwhelm (at work especially) can answer “yes” to these three questions.
Is what you do important?
Does what you do help improve the lives of others?
Is the future of the world enhanced by what you do?
So when you answer “yes,” you’re telling yourself –
Your work matters.
(And hey! Mine does, too.)
According to the psychologist, the trick is for us to keep reminding ourselves this.
I have no doubt that this works, but I’ve never tapped into the power of affirmations before.
I usually rely on the Law of Averages.
I reduce my “Overwhelms” by 50% by offsetting them with my “Underwhelms.”
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