there is no pie: the secret to managing overwhelm
Clean Thinking, Managing Stress, Anxiety, Overwhelm

The secret to managing overwhelm is realizing: There is no pie.

A personal note as we embark on fresh starts: I used to feel a considerable degree of overwhelm. I felt as though my husband needed 30% of the pie that was me, my child needed 30%, my job needed 30%, my friends needed 30%, my parents needed 30%…

Yes, that adds up to waaay more than 100%. But that’s how I felt.

And there was no piece of pie for me. I was desperately struggling to carve out what felt like even 1% of the pie for myself. Resentment bubbled up when I gave up my piece of the pie for something or someone else.

I tried so hard to follow the advice I read everywhere – take care of yourself first so that you can take care of everything else.

And it never worked.

Until I realized: there is no pie.


I wondered if trying to constantly clamp down on all the overwhelm was having the opposite effect of what I wanted.

So I tried an experiment.

I decided to go all in with my marriage. ALL IN. Not just taking responsibility for “my half of it.” I no longer defined partnership as 50-50. I defined it as 100-100. I took responsibility for the ENTIRE marriage… without a little caveat that whispered, as long as he does the same.

And I saw the marriage absolutely transformed.


I tried it at work. AMAZING. The outcomes I saw on the job were ground-breaking for me. The teamwork was no longer split up into component parts. There was ONE team where everyone on the team took FULL responsibility for it ALL. I had the team completely give up the idea that someone else should do their part. It was only ever about the 100% that we each individually brought to the table.

We exceeded our numbers. People grew and were promoted. Clients sang our praises. We landed more business.


And the results of this all-in experiment?

  • My fatigue and overwhelm just – poof! – vanished.
  • I felt fulfilled – finally.
  • Restful and healing sleep found me – the best sleep I had in years.
  • I was no longer doing more; I was accomplishing more. The hamster wheel I was on disappeared.

There is no pie.

You do not need to split up your time, your attention, your love, even your money (!) in the midst of overwhelm.

You can bring 100% to the table EVERY TIME. And this is why the overwhelm disappears: as a result, you get 100% of out every experience, every time. As a bonus, you may find that others will start taking your lead and come to you with their 100%, every time.


This is the secret to managing overwhelm: There is no limit to the positive things in life. Love, care, grace – even time, money, and attention – they only have limits whenever we believe that they do.

Mysterious and wonderful.

See my introductory video below for some insight into how I personally clawed my way out of the overwhelm.


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