Escape from overwhelm


Escape from overwhelmWork. Life. The news. It can all seem too much sometimes.

And let’s face it, the overthinking fatigue brought on by being a Waffler can make matters worse. Forcing ourselves to think through every possible scenario, starting with total catastrophe, can make even getting out of bed feel like more effort than it’s worth.

So when I saw this gif of Elle Woods, the main character from Legally Blonde — one of my favorite guilty pleasures — I had that knowing uncomfortable laugh you get when something confirms your own go-to coping mechanism.

If you’ve seen the movie, you may recognize this scene when Elle is wallowing after getting dumped by her boyfriend. Taken out of context though, it pretty much works for any moment when you want to hide out, watch romcoms, and forget about the world for a while.

Who else turns to chocolate? I cannot be the only one who uses this tactic. (Email me your favorite hiding techniques and sweet indulgences at lauree@unstuck.com.)

You never know, it could help. It could! I may have a not-so-secret stash of chocolate chips squirreled away in my desk for just those occasions that necessitate sugary moral support. Whereas in peak bouts of overwhelm, you’ll find me curled in a ball under the covers hoping that by the time I crawl out, a solution will have magically materialized on my behalf.

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What I really need to tell myself: Keep it simple

It’s amazing what choosing an easy task can do. Something you know you can accomplish without much effort and relatively no thinking. Such as scheduling an appointment or organizing your files. Once you check a couple of these quick wins off your to-do list, like me, you’ll probably feel emboldened to tackle the bigger decision or project that originally made you want to hide.

But if you’re not ready for that yet, it’s ok. You will be soon enough.

Sometimes you just need the chocolate — or the kind of self-care that works best when you’re feeling overwhelmed.

If today is the day, let Elle/Reese and I give you the permission to take good care of yourself, whether with dessert, an afternoon nap, a walk in the sunshine, retail therapy — a happy little escape before you get back to leaping.  

Lauree Ostrofsky on real-life monstersLauree Ostrofsky helps people love their lives, work, and each other more every day. She is chief hugger and coach at Simply Leap LLC and the author of SIMPLY LEAP: Seven Lessons on Facing Fear and Enjoying the Crap out of Your Life. Find her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram at @SimplyLeap.

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