Many people have heard the term overwhelming, but not every person understands the meaning of overwhelmed. The dictionary defines overwhelmed as “very strong” or “in great amount.” The term overwhelming usually refers to a person’s emotions. Overwhelming emotions can be positive or negative, and they can occur for various reasons. Some common dictionary synonyms for overwhelming are uncontrollable and irrepressible. Forceful is another overwhelming synonym. Swamped, engulfed, or submerged could substitute for an overwhelmed synonym.
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Trying to Define Overwhelmed
Trying to define overwhelmed from an emotional aspect is difficult, especially for someone who cannot communicate the feeling. From an emotional standpoint, an overwhelmed feeling can hinder a person so much that they can no longer move or think in a coordinated fashion. Some people have breathing problems when they feel overwhelmed by negativity. The feeling takes over their minds, bodies, and souls for an undefined time.
Positively Overwhelmed Definition
An overwhelming positive feeling does not affect a person like a negative one. The overwhelming positive feeling may resemble intoxication from the best drug or the most relaxing alcoholic beverage. Again, the overwhelming feeling grabs the person’s faculties, and the light from the good feelings shines brightly on other people in that vicinity.
The overwhelmed person may laugh or giggle. They may feel like hugging strangers or family members. Other positive feelings may erupt, as well. The positively overwhelmed person may desperately want to share goodness with other people.
Anxiously Overwhelmed Meaning
An anxiously overwhelming feeling can be negative or positive. For example, a person may feel as if there are not enough hours in the day to complete the tasks that they need to perform. An individual could feel overwhelmed at work because the boss has allotted too many tasks.
The worker could feel overwhelmed by internal pressure to be the best at a certain position. An anxious, overwhelming feeling can come over brides or grooms right before a wedding. They may worry if they are good enough for each other. They may wonder if their relationship can stand the test of time. Another example of an anxious, overwhelming feeling comes across a driver right before a crucial driving test.
Who Gets Overwhelmed Feelings?
Everyone can become overwhelmed by their environment or events that occur in life. However, some people are more susceptible to becoming overwhelmed than others. For example, a person who has a mental illness that affects their mood regulation could easily become overwhelmed.
Such illnesses include bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, borderline personality disorder, histrionic personality disorder, and depression. Individuals with the aforementioned illnesses may not have the tools necessary to avoid becoming engulfed by their emotions. Therefore, they tend to become overwhelmed when a major life event occurs.
Persons who have survived childhood and adult abuse also tend to become overwhelmed easily. Such people may suffer from low self-esteem and confidence and lack healthy coping mechanisms. Abused persons usually need therapy sessions to teach them to feel better about themselves so they can handle everyday life’s burdens.
Substance abusers may suffer from fluctuating emotions because of their addictions. The fluctuating emotions may make it difficult for them to handle many of the challenges that come their way in life. In addition, substance abusers may still be sensitive after they stop using drugs and alcohol because mood swings will occur.
Finally, senior citizens and very small children can become overwhelmed because they cannot cope with situations that go against the grain of happy living. Children must learn how to cope with challenges from the adults who raise them. Senior citizens sometimes suffer cognitive decline, resulting in frustration and poor mood regulation.
What Makes People Overwhelmed?
The overwhelming definition in the dictionary does not explain the elements that bring about overwhelming feelings. The dictionary defines overwhelming by simply stating that a person has “forceful feelings.” Hundreds of situations and happenings can cause some forceful feelings. The following are a few of the most common negative events that can cause someone to become overwhelmed:
Loss of a Loved One
The death of a loved one is one of the most difficult events that people have to face. People can become overwhelmed quite easily after the initial shock wears off. A person can become overwhelmed by the memories of the loved one and the idea that they will never again see the person.
Persons with unresolved feelings about their loved ones may suffer the most because of the lack of closure. Dealing with the death of a loved one may overwhelm a person for days, weeks, months, or years. Most employers provide bereavement days for this very reason.
A job loss can hit a person like a ton of bricks. The length of the person’s employment will play a huge role in their level of engulfment. In some ways, the loss of a job may feel like a death. The person may spend days wondering what they could have done better at the job. The individual may be hurt by the circumstance surrounding the termination. The person may not know whether survival is in the future.
The end of a long-term relationship or marriage is another event that can overwhelm a person. People visualize spending eternity with their mates. Finding out that their dreams will never come true is painful. Pain can take over if the person is not careful. The person may feel unworthy of love or incompetent to maintain a long-term relationship. Depression may begin. and A happy future may seem impossible.
Financial worries can cause anxiety, overwhelming feelings, or depressed overwhelming feelings. Most people desire to have just enough money to pay their bills. However, sadness, nervousness, and despair can kick in when maintaining one’s home seems impossible.
Some events can cause a person to become positively overwhelmed. The following are some examples of those triggers:
A Job Promotion
A worker can become positively overwhelmed by a job promotion. A newly promoted worker will feel special, superior, and privileged. These feelings may cause the person to become overly satisfied to the point of celebrating, which is not a bad thing.
The Birth of a New Child
The birth of a new child overwhelms many mothers and fathers. The idea that two people created a gorgeous little life is fantastic and precious. However, many new parents cry when they hold their babies for the first time. Crying is an example of being overwhelmed with joy.
The Acceptance of a Deity
Many groups have rituals during which they pledge themselves to their deity in a ceremony. It is common for a person to become overwhelmed with positive feelings during such a ceremony. In addition, some people claim that they feel good spirits enter their bodies during special ceremony moments.
Winning the Lottery
Winning the lottery is a bonafide trigger for overwhelming feelings. But on the other hand, a person can become pleasantly overwhelmed after hearing that they will never have to worry about bills for the duration of their lifetime.
Symptoms of Dangerous Overwhelming Feelings
A person can become overwhelmed with sadness, anxiety, or anger. Either of those feelings could cause mental illness and overall unhealthy existence. Sadness can consume a person to the point of severe depression. The sadness may begin with crying and progress to fatigue and displeasure in activities that used to make the person happy. Next, the person may experience recurring obsessive thoughts about the original trigger. For example, the person may replay instances of abuse, the last conversation with a loved one, or the events leading up to a job loss.
Thoughts of harming oneself or another person are dangerous and define overwhelming sadness. Any person who feels such a way should contact a crisis hotline or visit the nearest hospital.
Anxious and nervous overwhelming feelings can wreak havoc on a person’s life. The individual may become consumed with worries about future events. The person may hide in the house and refuse to go outside. Paranoia may make the person think everyone is out to get them. Furthermore, the person may experience physical signs of overwhelming anxiety, such as sweating, rapid heartbeat, weight loss, and the like. A professional should treat anxiety that causes missed work and failure to meet obligations.
Another feeling that can eat away at a person and overwhelm them is anger. Anger can come from many places. Anger can occur when an employer fires an employee. Anger can surface when an abusive party abuses a victim. Anger can manifest when a spouse or loved one cheat or abandons a partner.
Additionally, anger can occur when human beings misunderstand other human beings. Overwhelming anger is an emotion that can lead to violence, manipulation, self-hatred, and depression. Symptoms of anger include venomous rants, displeasure about a person or an organization, isolation, rumination, and more. Everyone experiences anger from time to time. However, long-lasting consumption of anger is extremely dangerous. A person overwhelmed with anger will need to seek guidance to eliminate the feelings.
How to Deal With Being Overwhelmed
The first step in dealing with overwhelming feelings is realizing that one is overwhelmed. Next, the person will have to look honestly at their work, family, and inner life. Seeking assistance from a counselor or therapist is a smart way to deal with feeling overwhelmed. Therapists and counselors can provide support and education. People who do not want to see a psychological therapist can use a different method.
Talking to family members and friends about one’s feelings can be as effective as speaking with a mental health specialist. Expressing feelings outward to someone who will listen objectively is the best method for minimizing the feelings. Meditation and exercise are other methods that a person may use to deal with overwhelming feelings. Exercise alters brain chemistry and causes happy feelings, while meditation relaxes the mind and the body.
Getting Treatment for Overwhelming Feelings
Medical specialists can assist with severe, uncontrollable, overwhelming feelings. A suffering party must contact a provider and schedule an initial consultation. The specialist may recommend medicinal treatment, cognitive behavioral therapy, or an alternative therapy method. Group therapy can bring positive results since it involves other people who are going through the same crises.
Overwhelming feelings do not have to be the end of the world. Instead, a person can find solace through professionals dedicated to helping people return to healthy mindsets.