Ten Steps to Emotional Stability: Wrangling the Overwhelm
by Angela Breidenbach
Do you feel all alone in trying to figure out how to manage all the commitments? Outside demands take a toll on inner contentedness especially when they interfere with our goals. Let’s discover ten steps to emotional stability.
Too often we let circumstances begin to control not only our day, but also our reactions and emotions. Tension and anger build up. Confusion takes over. We can’t see how to organize or delegate. We start to drown. Depression sets in and we feel helpless, overwhelmed. So we push harder, with less effectiveness, completely out of control. Then guilt imprisons our soul. We know God has a plan for us, but we’re too busy to understand how to get out of the quagmire. We’re as imprisoned as a bird in a cage.
One real way to protect our emotional health is to do only what is uniquely suited for you and delegate what can be done by someone else. It takes planning. Planning takes a few minutes of time. Time becomes a tool instead of a drill sergeant.
How do we know what to plan or how to manage our time?
Stop. Stop right where you are and pray! Breathe in deeply. Exhale out all your worries. Breathe in God’s presence. Exhale out the frenetic to-do list. Breathe in God’s list. Exhale out your fear of forgetting.
Total time spent: sixty seconds.
Really? We don’t have time to pray?
Next, sit and write a new to-do list with God in the lead. It doesn’t matter if it’s handwritten, on a smart phone, or on a computer. What’s important is writing the list when we’re fresh out of prayer when our minds are on things above. Isn’t the goal to live out our purpose?
It’s too easy to feel every item is a must. An excellent focus is to find what can be delegated first. Friends are an excellent resource to point out those items. Talk through the list with good friends who will ask hard questions, point out what needs releasing, and have an objective perspective.
“Without good advice, everything goes wrong—It takes careful planning for things to go right.” Proverbs 15:22 CEV
Scared to release control?
Ask: “Am I stealing someone else’s blessing by doing this by myself?” Your friends will probably know who should be doing that task, may be better suited to it, and may feel useless because you’ve been doing what they should. Isn’t it a bit arrogant to feel we must do it all and thereby steal someone else’s sweet spot?
I don’t want to answer to that sin when standing in front of God’s throne, do you?
Sometimes we forget that we are not in this all alone. The point is to view our goals through God’s vision. He’s given us fellowship for both support and wisdom. Focus on delegation rather than being the only one to complete all the tasks. Then work those that only you can do. Work toward your life purpose every day with these ten steps to emotional stability.
2. Make the list
3. Star delegatable items
4. Talk it over with good friends
5. Choose important tasks for that day only (tomorrow has enough worry)
6. Check your list and make sure it includes your life goals every day
7. Start the first item on the list
8. Physically mark the list when you finish
9. Send up a prayer of gratitude for each completed task
10. Celebrate each completed task