Life can be wondrous, exciting, frustrating, passionate, stressful, exhilarating, and sad, and sometimes it can be all of these at the same time! And that can bring on moments where we feel completely overwhelmed and incapable of thinking or moving forward. When this happens to me, I remember one of the best pieces of advice from a friend:
You only have to make it through the next five minutes – one minute at a time…
and you WILL be fine.
She was right, and I share her wisdom with others when I see someone under stress. If it works for me, why not for others?
Take a deep breath, inhale and exhale and simply breathe through the next 60 seconds, then 60 more until the magical 5 minute point. At that point, nothing has changed but the wave of utter helplessness has somehow subsided. Feeling overwhelmed is like the perfect storm – all things seem to collide at the same time making the negative waves seem like they are drowning us!
When we are overcome by emotion (positive or negative), financial or physical stress, or when something happens that “breaks the camel’s back”, we might wonder if we can make it through life – but we really only have to make it through the next five minutes.
Even 5 minutes can seem like an eternity!
But… when you set aside the massive pile of things that overwhelm you at the moment, and simply concentrate on making it through the next five minutes, five minutes at a time, things often become easier.
Five minutes are akin to bite size pieces of our lives. (Have you heard the famous answer to: How does one eat an elephant? “One bite at a time.”)
Living life fully is sometimes as simple (and as difficult) as living it in bite sized pieces… five minutes at a time.
Wishing you a low stress, happy week ahead!