How to Back Up the Bus if You’re Already Overwhelmed in 2016!


Feeling Overwhelmed

It’s January. It’s a new year. We’re supposed to be full of motivation and resolution and fresh start and git’er done!!!  We’re SUPPOSED to be. But don’t you just HATE the mornings that come around when you open your eyes and IMMEDIATELY feel OVERWHELMED?  I’m thankful this doesn’t happen to me on a regular basis – I’m a morning person and I NEED MY MORNINGS! But sometimes it happens and it sucks and I have to find a formula to help me get out of those slumps or my day is ruined. Anyone with me?

When I wake up like that and things begin flying through my mind so frantic and fast, I just want to bawl.  “When will I get the Christmas decorations put away?”  “How am I going to get up to my Mom’s and help her today?” “My Editorial calendar isn’t even started!” “Next week is Fancy Food Show – I’ll be gone from home for a week – when will I be able to cook ahead to leave food in the fridge for the guys?”  On and on and on it goes until I’m a crazy whack – a terrible way to start the day.

I’ve learned that when I can’t prioritize, I’m very soon paralyzed.  I’m sitting in my prayer chair doing one of two things:  Twisting a lock of hair until I’m nearly bald on the side of my head, OR, I’ve gone to the pantry, pulled out a Jiffy cake mix, beat it up in a bowl and sit there with a spoon, sucking it down, trying to calm myself.  All that does is make me feel WORSE.  “What kind of a person does THIS?”  begins to spin around in my head.

There are always signs that I’m going to have one of these melt-down mornings, but most times I’m oblivious.  I don’t recognize them until I’m caught up in the melt-down! My “piles” are everywhere – so many things that I need to attend to and always have the best intentions…

Today, I’ve realized that just 6 days into the new year, I don’t feel positive and upbeat for new things because I really haven’t had any time to recover from Christmas!  Most of December was spent preparing for Christmas, then it’s here and we go into “let’s do this” mode and for the rest of the month there are kids home on break, husband’s on vacation, and there’s just no where and no way (it seems) to recharge and recover! What’s a Mom to do????

Here’s what I’ve discovered helps me, and let me tell you, on days like this one, I’ve got to FORCE MYSELF to do the following:


Hit your knees and go before the Lord.  So many, many times I discovered later that feelings of overwhelming frustration are what God uses to get my attention!  He’s calling me and using what He knows will get me “motivated” to move towards Him.  (I call this the Chef Alli Smack Down)


Tell somebody you’re close to that you’re struggling.  Could be your spouse or a good friend or a needy neighbor.  Sometimes before I can even call my Hubbins to let him know I’m struggling, I have to do an out-loud shout out to Satan, ordering him to get behind me in the name of Jesus! And I don’t mind who hears me, either.  Then I call BDP, who usually already knows what I’m about to tell him. Funny how my face can say so much! Now, there’s a chance your husband or friend will think he or she has to fix everything for you. So make sure you remind them that you just need to vent. You need to PRONOUNCE what you’re feeling, and they do NOT need to drop everything to fix it. (most of the time anyways) In fact, the best thing BDP can say when I call him in a tizzy is five simple words: How can I help you? It reminds me that his feet are right in the puddle next to mine. It makes me feel less alone in my mess and gives me the strength to take step three.


Out of your huge list of things to do, you need to pick one. Pick a place to start. Try to get you brain wrapped around just ONE THING. But don’t stop there. Now you need to WRITE. IT. DOWN. We know that a task is 40% more likely to get accomplished if we write it down. I don’t know what it is about that act, but the hand, the brain, the physical and visual reminder. It just helps me clear my head. That must be why people journal every day??? It helps! Plus, it’s easier to tackle one task than a thousand. And once you finish that one thing, you can stop there, or you might just find yourself motivated to write down one more thing. And one more thing.

Before you know it, by PRAYER, PROUNCING, and PICKING ONE you are well on your way to getting back on your feet.

Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

You can do it!

Now You’re Cookin’,
Chef Alli


This post originally aired on Periscope ChefAlli@maketakebake in January 2016.

Join me Mon-Sat at 9am central on Periscope!
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