Easing Overwhelm in New Ways

Before I finish writing this, chances are good that I’ll be interrupted.

One of my kiddos will probably ask me for food, or I might hear screams that trigger my mom instincts to investigate what’s happening. (The office door just opened) Actually, my husband just walked in the office. 

These are minimal distractions, right? Like a ding on my phone. Or a buzz on my watch. 

It might seem minimal on the surface, but these types of distractions are actually contributing to overwhelm and anxiety and making it difficult to think deeply and solve big problems. 

Take me, for example, if we were to peek inside my brain when the office door opened we’d see ALERT signals firing. I don’t feel like I have survival instincts working right now, but I do. We all do. There’s a part of our brain that’s like a watchdog, and when the office door opened my “watchdog” quickly investigated.

Now, suppose we’re able to peek inside my brain when I get a ding on my phone, check email, look at Facebook, or Instagram. What do you think we’d see? Let’s just say the “watchdog brain” would be barking. 

This was true during the pre-pandemic days, but now our brains may want to check email or Facebook even more because we’re afraid of missing out on important information about our safety. 

But, when we’re not on high alert and are instead able to think deeply, incredible things can happen. 

Being and thinking without distraction is where we can be influenced by inspiration and make room for innovation, big picture thinking, problem-solving, and creating art. We make stuff. We change stuff. We have “Eureka!” moments. 

We feel alive. 

We feel in the flow. 

We feel at ease. 

Even with all of the distractions, all of the chaos in the world or in our lives, I believe we can still create space for deep work. 

For me, I (ideally) wake before my children to have space for writing, thinking, and creating. No phone. No computer. No news. Just me. Sometimes my kiddos have other plans, but I can usually get at least an hour in. I’ve also blocked off Mondays as “creative days” where I don’t meet with clients and my husband protects the office door. 

There’s no one way to do this, of course. What works for me, may not work for you, but consider how YOU might be able to create time without the distraction of people, phones, watches, or media. 

How can you create space for your “watchdog brain” to take a lazy nap? 

What environment would help you? 

What might you need to turn off? 

What might be possible for you if you do create this space for inspiration? 

I believe there is potential for greatness, healing, Being, and creating. 


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