It’s important not to under-estimate the cumulative effects of stress!
Imagine an empty bucket. Now every time you encounter stress in your day, imagine pouring some water into that bucket.
The bucket gradually gets fuller and fuller with the stress you encounter and only has a limited capacity so will eventually overflow. If your bucket is very full, it might only take a tiny splash of stress for your stress bucket to overflow, leaving you feeling overwhelmed really easily!
So what can we do to prevent our bucket from overflowing?
Self care and effective coping strategies are the way to create holes in our bucket so the stress can drain out. When we’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed, we can often neglect to do the things which keep us feeling well, when this is exactly the time when we need them the most! As long as you keep engaging in your stress-relieving activities, your bucket is much less likely to overflow and you are much less likely to feel overwhelmed.
Spend some time identifying the activities which help you to feel rejuvenated and make sure they happen on a regular basis so you have plenty of drainage holes in your stress bucket.
As part of therapy, I often help people to recognise the things which might be contributing to their stress bucket feeling full and help them to develop strategies which can alleviate some of this so they have more capacity to live life in the way they want to, without feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.