8 Signs that Your Are an Overwhelmed Mom
Maybe you're having unexplained mood swings. Or maybe you have a hard time making decisions and you keep procrastinating. Maybe you start to dread the day as soon as you wake up.
You might be overwhelmed.
Disclaimer: You may have another medical problem. I am not a trained medical professional, what is written in this post is based on my personal experiences. Please see a doctor if you have any concerns.
I am very easily overwhelmed and it has taken me some time but now I know the signs of overwhelm in my own body. Take time to listen to what your body is trying to tell you.
If you're not sure what you're body is telling you, here are a few of the symptoms of overwhelm. Symptoms vary from person to person but these are the most common ones and typically you experience multiple symptoms when you're overwhelmed. The symptoms like to overwhelm you as much as the actual overwhelm. ;)
With each symptom there is a tip for how to handle it but the most important coping technique to use is to take it to God. Pray about it and give it over to God and then put these techniques into place.
Symptoms of Overwhelm
1. Have a hard time making decisions
When you are too overwhelmed, your brain is moving so fast that you can't make decisions. If you are experiencing this symptom, start by writing down everything that is in your head, just do a brain dump. Get everything out of your head so you can visualize everything and get things done one at a time.
2. Dread each day
One of my symptoms of overwhelm is basically shutting down, sometimes it looks a little bit like depression but it's actually just overwhelm. If you are shutting down and/or dreading each day, get some accountability. Have your husband literally push you out of bed in the mornings if you need to or have your best friend help you get out of the house.
This is similar to having a hard time making decisions. If you keep putting things off, there are two things you can do. First, do a brain dump. Write out everything you have procrastinated on. Second, put some new systems in place. Maybe you need to learn how to use a tool like Trello or you need to make some room in your daily routines to get things done.
4. Stomach aches
Stomach aches are a big symptom of anxiety and overwhelm for me, going back all the way to kindergarten. For real. In kindergarten I had intense stomach aches from anxiety and overwhelm. When I was in elementary school a therapist told my parents to just give me Tums anytime I said my stomach hurt and even though I knew that there weren't actually doing anything, the placebo effect definitely helped. Nowadays, I use oils to help me manage my emotions when my stomach aches from overwhelm. I put a little bit of Young Living's Tummygize on my belly to make it calm down and use oils like Young Living's Valor to help ground me.
5. Weight gain or loss
While overwhelm doesn't directly make you gain weight, it does cause you to over eat or under eat. Accountability will help here as will using oils to help handle your emotions.
6. Poor memory
While mom brain is a legit thing, overwhelm can cause your memory to get even worse. There's so much swirling around in your head that your brain can't keep up. Vitamin B supplements may help your memory, as well as your energy. Do another brain dump and put a system in place that will help you remember things. I vote for Trello.
7. Overly tired or insomnia
I've always struggled with falling to sleep when I'm overwhelmed, my brain just doesn't want to shut off. Again, oils really help. I really like Lavender, Young Living's Peace & Calming, and Young Living's Valor oils at bedtime to help me relax. If you are overly tired during the day, take a nap if you get the chance. There is nothing wrong with naps, they are a form of self-care!
8. Mood swings
Mood swings are common for moms, we have some crazy hormones, but when you can't figure out why you're having mood swings, it could be because of overwhelm. Yep, again another symptom that oils really help with! Peace & Calming is great for mood swings (or crazy toddlers).
Knowing what your body is telling you is the first step to overcoming that overwhelm. As hippy-ish as it may sound, you really can listen to your body and learn what it's telling you. You know yourself better than anyone else (other than God because He did make you!) so trust what your body is telling you.