When you live with chronic pain, it isn’t enough to recite an affirmation in the morning, and hope the pain is suddenly an after thought you can take in stride.
That’s an ineffective approach because it requires you to oversimplify the solution, mask your pain so everyone else is comfortable, and beat yourself up because the switch didn’t flip.
In my experience, the negative thoughts intrude all day long. Although my symptoms may vary in intensity, they don’t stop. So there’s plenty for my brain to react to.
When your mind responds with, “This SUCKS. I hate this!” “It isn’t fair I have to live like this!” I understand.
I have those moments too. I’ve also learned I don’t have to piggy back on these thoughts, and keep this line of reactivity alive.
I can acknowledge the part of myself that’s sick of all this, then remind myself my priorities are progress that includes self-care (refueling), being solution-focused, and empowered.
If you own a car, you need to fill er up or plug er in the make it go, yes?
You work the same way regardless of how hard you try to be unstoppable.
Although a part of my brain is telling me it’s hard to do what we want. Another part is saying, yes, but we can if we do it more strategically.
Both have something to say, one must ultimately be in charge.
Self-care is a habit, a habit that can require daily, and hourly reinforcement to keep going. Even if that’s what it takes, its better than the alternative.
What helps reduce overthinking, overwhelm, and procrastination?
This is one of my favorite things to help people with.
Let’s face it, you often think of more reasons NOT to do something than to do it, right? That’s one of the reasons you experience overwhelm.
1) Procrastination which causes unfinished tasks to increase in number
2) Difficulty saying, “No” results in added responsibility you have neither the time or energy for
3) Refusing to ask for help leaves you two-handed when you need at least four
As much as your executive functioning challenges (e.g. getting started, maintaining focus, doing things in order, and so on) make getting things done difficult. There’s the emotional resistance, strengthened by years of criticism, and correction. With few experiencing of useful guidance on what to do instead.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of believing mistakes is all you’re good for.
You’ll do anything to avoid making mistakes at this point, and the subsequent barrage of brutal,
shame frosted self-talk that follows.
This pattern is a self-fulfilling prophecy, practically guaranteeing a negative experience every time you take the slightest risk.
I suspect you’d like to explore an alternative to this, yes?
Back to the original question, “What helps reduce overthinking, overwhelm, and procrastination?”
In my experience, it’s accountability. Especially For us ADHD, Neurodivergent types.
If left to their own devices, little if anything is likely to happen in between conversations with them.
The accountability changes that.
Poor executive functions make it difficult to create, and follow a plan.
Life can feel like driving your car through yards, and over mailboxes every time you leave the house.
No plan or sense of direction.
Having an accountability partner isn’t about assigning the role of “designated nag” to someone.
It’s having someone agree to support you in creating results important to YOU. It helps to have someone there to hold your hand during the more difficult parts. Am I right?
With an accountability partner, you aren’t alone at any point in your journey.
Your partner can be a sounding board, a brainstorming partner, a voice of reason, a coach, a teacher, and sometimes a friend.
Knowing I’m there for you, and have your back. This alone reduces anxiety.
So many things happening inside you,
many working against taking risk,
experiencing growth, to remain safe from criticism.
Yet action is where the rubber meets the road. It’s a universal law – nothing happens until something moves. That includes you.
It’s the daily nudging, and guidance from me that helps make sure my clients follow through.
I have several accountability partners that help keep me from chasing every shiny object, so I concentrate on the goals, and objectives we agreed I’d focus on. They also help me get things done in a timely manner.
It isn’t a failure or weakness to need this support, it’s a reality. I can adjust to reality or resist it.
I message with my clients between sessions to help them take what’s in their minds, and turn it into action until they get the result they want. This is their opportunity to apply what they learn during our live conversations. Its also the time during which they’ll bump against a lot of self-sabotage.
There are a lot of old beliefs, and habits that showed up to protect the kid who felt they couldn’t do anything right.
Beliefs, and habits that grab onto the ankles of the adult that knows better, making it difficult to take the next step forward.
Time to step out of the past.
Let’s explore working together, because you have a life to live, a difference to make, and a legacy to leave. Sound like a plan?
One thing I hide behind my chipper demeanor,
is how much physical pain I actually experience day to day.
Yes, I’ve tried that!
Yep, that too!
I don’t talk about it every moment because there’s nothing to be accomplished by doing so.
I’m writing this from bed because the pain wipes me out.
That, and the cortisone shot for my back is wearing off.
That’ll open the floodgates to major burning, and stabbing pain from my low back down to my feet.
I share this with you because it’s a fact of my experience.
It isn’t a failure, curse or punishment. It’s simply a fact.
I also live with purpose, and have goals to accomplish.
Why should feeling sick stop me?
Sure, it slows me down.
But I’m relentless like water dripping on a stone.
I still manage to leave my mark.
Our aspirational culture bombards us with celebrities, influencers, heroes, and villains.
It has to influence, trend, be EPIC or Iconic!
It doesn’t have to make the news, go viral or win an award to make an impact.
Persistence, a little at a time, over time, can make a big difference. Patient determination.
Somedays I can only stick my toes over the sideline, and onto the field. But I’m still in the arena.
There have been days where I did no, “work”.
But I still practiced self-compassion, and being present while waiting for the worst of it to pass.
Sometimes I want to cry, sometimes I do cry.
It’s a part of moving through the experience until it calms down.
I choose my attitude, my priorities, and which thoughts I choose to believe. Attach those to my aptitudes for resilience, and resourcefulness.
Now my everyday experiences are filtered through a solution-focused way of approaching life, that makes me virtually unstoppable. Fortunately for you, this is all teachable.