Things To Do When You’re Feeling Overloaded, Stressed And Stumped: Stressed man sitting at a laptop.

Things To Do When You’re Feeling Overloaded, Stressed And Stumped


by Kym Farris


Let’s face it we’ve all been there. You get your coffee ( or whatever beverage you choose), open your laptop and your mind goes blank. Or like me, I start writing and I get stumped on where I want the direction of my article to go. Sometimes life can get so stressful that the thought of sitting down to write can seem overwhelming.  

I belong to a writing group and I asked a question last week on this topic. I wanted to know what other people do when these things happen to them. I had some good responses and after doing some reading I have narrowed down a few I not only use but find beneficial.


Finding things that relax you is a start

I love to read. It doesn't matter really who writes it or what genre it is, I read everything. Yet, my guilty pleasure has always been Jackie Collins. A good book in a quiet spot in the house can bring your stress level way down. I have a book I have read over 20 times and although I know it front to back when I read it I feel a sense of ease. I know the outcome but because it's such a happy ending it makes me smile a real smile. And at that moment I’m ready to tackle the world again. 

But wait! Not only can reading relax you, but you can also get ideas when you're stumped on an assignment. One time I was writing a paper for school and got stumped. I couldn't think of a single thing to write. I went to read my stress away. I was going through different articles on the internet when I came across something really irrelevant but for some reason, while reading it ideas started to come to me. I grabbed my pen and paper to start jotting ideas down. I don’t rely on memory well, let's just say that hasn’t proved to be reliable in the past. Ha!


Comforting hobbies

Someone in the group wrote that they cook. Now I cook and have never taken the time to see it as relaxing. So I did a little research and what I found is when I make certain things it does relax me even just for a few minutes.

  1. I make my mother's homemade Macaroni and cheese. Every single time I make it I feel like a kid again. It brings me back to a time when things were simple. When the family sat down to dinner together and asked how the day was? Those days may be gone but the memories will always be alive and as I found out through cooking.
  2. When I cook I always have music on. And yes I find myself dancing around the kitchen. Honestly, besides sleep can you get any more relaxed than that?


Hang out with friends

It’s so important to keep in touch with the people you love that shine positivity in your life. I have a grandson and although I haven't seen him in a while one simple “Hi Nana” and hug could wash every issue I have away. Also, these are the people who will lift you up when you want to give up. I know I’ve stated I’m in college and I am 49 years old. I decided to go back about a year and a half ago. It’s hard. There are days I cry, I want to give up and throw in the towel. A phone call to my best friend can change that for me. She gives me the talk I need. She doesn’t sugarcoat anything for me. In fact, she's harder on me than I am on myself. But knowing someone believes in me that much lets me know I can do anything. And that takes some stress away. 



And don’t forget having a journal handy is useful in these situations. I write down times of day when I feel overwhelmed or a situation that leaves me feeling that way. And next to these issues I will write a few things I tried to relax. This way going forward I can see what has worked for me. 

Below I am linking some books on ways to lessen the stress that I have found interesting.

Also a few links to journals.



Stop Overthinking: 23 Techniques to Relieve Stress, Stop Negative Spirals, Declutter Your Mind, and Focus on the Present

The Official Writers' Coloring Book : Motivate Your Muse Then Get Your Write On!

You are a Badass (Deluxe Edition): How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life

Ruled Journal/Notebook - Lined Journal with Premium Thick Paper, 8.5" X 6.4"

The Whoosh of a Swan Landing on a Pond: Journal Paperback



That’s all of it! If you have other services you’d recommend, be sure to let us know in the comments. And while you’re here - subscribe to our mailing list, so you don’t miss any ghostwriting tips and best practices that we’ll be sharing here each week.



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