Why Moms Always Feel Overwhelmed (and what you can do about it!)
Feeling overwhelmed is something I talk about a lot because, truthfully, it’s the state that most women and moms live in all of the time.
A key part of helping to stop feeling overwhelmed — and instead move into greater work-life harmony — is to understand why you’re always feeling this way.
So, in today’s blog, I’m diving into the three biggest reasons you’re constantly feeling so overwhelmed day in and day out. Will they cover every single source of your overwhelm?
Probably not, but I think you will find that most of what you’re so bogged down with comes back to one of these three sources of stress.
Reason #1 You’re Overwhelmed: Increased Responsibilities
While the world is definitely improving when it comes to opportunities available to women, there are still a lot of traditional responsibilities that have not been taken off our plates.
Yes, women can have big careers and run huge companies (which is phenomenal!), but many of us are also still the ones responsible for tasks like meal planning, housework, coordinating childcare, etc. And, when you put it all together, it’s a LOT!
Also, neighborhoods and communities aren’t often as connected as they used to be, so our “village” is smaller and we don’t have the support systems moms used to have.
Another factor is how busy our kids are now. There’s so much pressure to be involved in multiple after-school activities, and all of these plans and responsibilities continue to pile up without anything being taken away from our load.
Reason #2 You’re Overwhelmed: Technology
When you compare the technology in your life now versus the technology you had a few decades ago, things look very different.
You probably had a computer and email at work, a home phone with an answering machine, a VCR, and a TV. Maybe you had dial-up at home, but it was super slow, and you definitely weren’t online 24/7.
Unlike your current reality, there wasn’t a constant bombardment of information or the ability for someone to reach you all of the time no matter where you were.
Now, technology is everything, and it never stops. So of course you’re overwhelmed.
Reason #3 You’re Overwhelmed: Unrealistic Expectations
This cause of overwhelm can certainly be linked to the first two sources of feeling overwhelmed.
When we spend time scrolling on Pinterest or social media, all we see is a continual feed of beautifully curated lives — from people’s meals to their homes to their bodies.
It’s so easy to fall into a trap of comparison. And this comparison leads to unbelievably unrealistic expectations.
And, of course, these unachievable expectations we place on ourselves in all areas of our lives cause us to feel overwhelmed.
How to Stop Feeling Overwhelmed
The first thing you have to do to fight back against all of this overwhelm is to give yourself a break and acknowledge that, in the world we currently live in, it’s 100% valid and understandable that you feel this way. You have good reason to be so overwhelmed!
Acknowledge that you know these things and that you can’t possibly keep up, and that’s okay. This is step number one.
Then, you can be ready to find ways and resources to decrease these sources of overwhelm — to decrease the level of responsibility, to decrease the effects of technology, to decrease unrealistic expectations.
There are things you can do to start chipping away at the overwhelm in each of these areas.
#1 Lessen What You’re Responsible For
To decrease your responsibilities, you need to take a step back and get a 30,000-foot view of everything you are currently responsible for with a time audit.
This is the first thing we do inside of my TOP Program because it empowers you with the information you need to see how you’re really spending your time and what you can do differently.
There could be things that don’t need to be on your plate, things you could group together for more efficiency, or things you could outsource or delegate.
#2 Re-evaluate How You Use Technology
I won’t go too in-depth with this particular way to decrease overwhelm because I’ve spent a lot of time talking about this in other places.
Instead, I’ll recommend a few of those resources that will absolutely set you in the right direction to lessening the overwhelm you feel when it comes to your technology:
- This blog post on How to Minimize Distractions
- Trainings inside The Pink Bee App (available on the Apple or Google Play store)
- This podcast on The 2 Types of Distractions
#3 Manage Your Expectations
An exercise that I’ll be doing at Plan-a-Palooza, but also one you can do at any time, is to sit down and really think through your core values.
What are the things that, at the end of the day, even if everything went awry and sideways, you could come back to and say, “as long as this is in place, I'm okay”?
This list will likely be less than 5 things long, and when you have it, you have a new lens to look at the expectations you are setting for yourself and your life.
And when you have this in place, it will lessen your overwhelm and help you move into more work-life harmony.