One of the hard truths we all have to accept is that life is not a bed of roses. It is full of ups and downs. So, while we may wish that only good things happen in our lives, we often face challenges that make everything feel heavy and overwhelming. For example, lately, it always seems like bad things are happening, whether in the world or in our personal lives.

From the coronavirus pandemic that is still ravaging the globe to the current Russia-Ukraine war and the other things that could be happening to you and the people close to you that make you sad, stressed or worried. Since you can’t avoid the bad things that happen to you or around you forever, it would be good for you to know how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming.

Stress, sadness, and anxiety are intense emotions that can weigh heavily on you and affect the quality of your life, especially if you are an empath or a highly sensitive person (HSP). Therefore, whenever you feel like you are carrying a heavy burden, you should find ways to lighten your load and give yourself a break.

Hopefully, by the end of this post, you will have learned how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming. Keep reading to find out how you can lighten up and attract more positive energy into your life when everything feels negative.

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How to Cope When Everything Feels Heavy and Overwhelming

  1. Unplug

Technology is one of man’s best inventions. But, unfortunately, using it could expose you to content that can make you feel stressed, anxious, and overwhelmed. Despite your best efforts, you may be unable to always filter the type of content you come across while scrolling on social media feeds or when you turn on the TV.

To protect your mental health, you should consider disconnecting from your devices to avoid triggering material. You can use this time to get emotional, mental, and sensory rest or do other things that improve your health instead.

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  1. Breathe

We breathe without thinking or consciously trying to do it. However, circumstances may force you to remind yourself to do it. For example, when stressful or traumatic events happen, you may feel tense, afraid, or anxious, which could trigger panic attacks.

To prevent this from happening and learn how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming, you should consider doing breathing exercises to calm your mind and nerves. Hence, if you ever feel too hot or like your body is constricting, step away from the stressor and take deep breaths. 

Breathing deeply sends signals to your brain to calm down and relax, thereby reducing stress and anxiety.

READ ALSO: 5 Tips to Manage Anxiety Effectively

  1. Meditate

Sometimes, the things that make us feel stressed, sad, and overwhelmed are not current events. It could be that you are stuck in the past, obsessing over your mistakes, or, perhaps, you are worrying too much about the future. If you want to learn how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming, however, you need to bring yourself back to the present through meditation.

Practicing meditation involves sitting in a quiet place, focusing on the present moment, and allowing your thoughts to pass through your mind without judgment or validation. According to studies, meditation is effective in helping people manage feelings of anxiety and stress and also prevents depressive episodes.

  1. Distract yourself

What things make you happy? What activities can you engage in and somehow tune out the world? When everything feels heavy and overwhelming in your life, one of the best ways to cope is to give yourself a break. If the present moment and events are making you feel stressed, worried, or sad, you can distract yourself by doing something you enjoy or something that you can get fully immersed in for a while.

Doing your hobbies, exercising, or taking a walk are some of the things you can do to take your mind off whatever is eliciting intense emotions in you temporarily. If you want to learn how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming, distractions are a great idea because they could help you avoid self-sabotaging and destructive behaviors, such as emotional eating, emotional outbursts, self-harm, and substance abuse.

READ ALSO: 10 Ways to Unwind After a Stressful Day

  1. Write about your feelings

Writing is therapeutic as it helps you sort out your feelings and understand yourself better. As such, journaling is one of the best ways to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming.

You can write in a journal every morning and/or in the evenings, recording everything that happens in your life each day. Through the self-reflection you do when journaling, you can easily identify what is making you feel the way you do and try to work on it.

When everything feels heavy and overwhelming, you could also try to find something to be thankful for every day while writing in your journal. When you actually look, you will often find that there is always something to celebrate and appreciate every day, no matter how small it may seem to be.

  1. Protect your energy

Negative energy can get attached to you in many ways. For example, through the people you allow into your life, your surroundings, the content you consume, or even your own psyche. But, negative energy attracts even more negativity into your life. So, if you want to learn how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming, you need to start protecting your energy.

It could involve practicing self-care, getting rid of toxic friends who are pessimistic, users, and bad influences, or even placing crystals in your home for protection against negative energy. Do whatever you need to do to protect your energy and your mental health.

READ ALSO: 5 Best Crystals for Protection of Your Home and Yourself

  1. Turn to your support system

A problem shared is a problem halved. Thus, when everything feels heavy and overwhelming, one of the best things you can do is turn to your support system. These could be your family and/or friends.

Build a strong support system by surrounding yourself with people you can always rely on when you need a shoulder to cry on, a good listener to vent to, someone to change your perspective, someone to bring out positive emotions in you, or turn to when you need advice.

A strong support system will help you deal with difficult emotions, hence, it is important to build one and stay in touch with your loved ones if you want to learn how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming.

  1. Use positive affirmations and mantras

The things we tell ourselves can affect how we feel and think. So, if you keep telling yourself negative things, you will feel negative emotions which can then lead to negative thought patterns. Therefore, if you want to know how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming, you should make a habit of reciting positive affirmations and mantras in order to become more optimistic.

If you believe in the law of attraction, you know that you attract whatever you focus your energy on. Thus, when you repeatedly wish and tell yourself positive things, your subconscious mind and the universe will help you manifest them.

  1. Do an act of kindness

If you are an empath and the events that are making things feel heavy and overwhelming are happening to other people, you may feel helpless and hopeless. You feel other people’s emotions or care and think too much about their problems.

Even though you may not be able to solve all their problems, there are many other ways you can help other people whose suffering is making you suffer. One of the ways to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming is to try making a difference in someone’s life through acts of kindness.

For example, if you are stressed or thinking too much about the homeless person you left out there in the cold, you could bring them food and a blanket or recommend a shelter for homeless people they can go to. If you are worried about the people in Ukraine because of the Russian invasion, you can find ways to help them here.

These acts of kindness will make you feel better for having done something to help someone in need.

  1. Embrace your emotions and manage them

While it is good to be optimistic, we also need to be realistic because sometimes there is no brighter side to some situations. For example, the loss of a loved one. And that is one of the mistakes some people make when dealing with difficult emotions. They deny and bottle up their negative emotions instead of just embracing them.

The campaign for people to be more positive has been gaining momentum in recent years, making anyone experiencing negative emotions feel ashamed or guilty for feeling that way. But that is toxic positivity. All emotions are valid, and no one can manage to be happy and positive all the time.

Negative emotions are a natural reaction when bad things happen in your life and you shouldn’t have to apologize or feel guilt and shame for having them. If you want to learn how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming, you need to embrace all your emotions and then find ways to manage them.

To heal and move on, you could cry, find other outlets for your emotions, or seek professional help. It is okay to not be okay sometimes.

READ ALSO: 10 Things You Should Never Apologize for

Wrapping Up

Life is full of ups and downs. And although the ups are enjoyable, we often take them for granted and don’t notice or appreciate them much until they are gone. The downs, on the other hand, affect our happiness and quality of life negatively.

You may try your best to prevent negative things from happening in your life, but they might still occur due to the concept of regression to the mean. Hence, it is time for you to learn how to cope when everything feels heavy and overwhelming. \

The above tips will help you lighten your burden and protect your mental health, thereby improving the quality of your life.


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21 thoughts on “10 Ways to Cope When Everything Feels Heavy and Overwhelming

  1. Thank you for this list. I especially started focusing on my breathing while ready your post and realized how tense I was. These are great tips. Also, I plan on putting down my phone very soon. I’ve just been so overwhelmed lately.

  2. I love how you discuss embracing your emotions. It took me forever to realize that living well means living authentically and letting myself feel all of my emotions, not just the ones I find “acceptable” or “convenient”. Great post!

    1. Thank you so much for reading, Belen!❤️ It is time we all knew and accepted that it is okay to not be okay or feel happy all the time. There is a reason both negative and positive emotions exist.

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