Maxie McCoy

Overwhelmed by this all? 14 Questions to Help

Bad days happen. Stressed days happen. Shitty days happen. Numb days happen. Just fine days happen. And some good ones occasionally, too. But the feeling I’m hearing the most from what we’re all facing – no matter what the individual situation looks like – is completely, utterly, overwhelmed.

Overwhelmed because there’s too much happening too quickly. Too much changing. Because there’s too much to feel. Because there’s too much to fix. Because too many people we know are going through too many hard things. Because so many people we’ll never meet are going through troubling, trying and down-right terrible times. And equally overwhelmed by the beauty we’re seeing in what can happen when humanity comes together, when people are fighting for something bigger than themselves, and how far love can get us. That’s overwhelming in a beautiful way, too.

It can be hard to make sense of it all. I don’t think we will anytime soon. But what I do know is that taking a moment of pause to reflect on our own experiences these past weeks can help us start to parse out the overwhelm. It can begin to show us what we’re learning about ourselves. What we’re *really* feeling. And maybe, when we’re ready, what we might use it to inform choices later down the road.

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed like I’ve been, take ten minutes to ask yourself about your own experiences with these fourteen questions, below. I’ve also made these questions into this downloadable (and writeable pdf) worksheet.

When I sat outside last week to answer these for myself, something shifted. It was like somewhere in my answers was clarity in the overwhelm. A break in the fog. So that I could see ever-so-slightly a more focused view of what I’ve been feeling and what I use from this experience later. Nothing earth shattering, just a tilt in the better emotional direction that I so badly needed.

I know some of you who have done this worksheet for date night. I know some of you who’ve done it with your teams. Some of you have done it with besties over Zoom. And some of you have filled it out alone on your couch. Knowing it’s helping brings me immense joy. However you reflect, I hope these 14 questions lead you to your own answers.


  1. What’s one insight that this change of routine has revealed to me?
  2. What simple thing has become exciting?
  3. What new (or lost) interest or action have I found time for? 
  4. Who and what am I missing the most that I previously took for granted?
  5. Who and what am I not missing, that I previously gave significant attention to?
  6. What emotion has been coming up for me the most? What do I attribute the source of that emotion to be?
  7. What three things have always brought me the most emotional wellbeing during this time?
  8. Where in my day can I create space for something that inspires me? What would I be making space for…?
  9. When have I felt the most proud of myself during this time? What was I doing?
  10. What has surprised me the most about myself, my loved ones, the world, and/or society at this time?
  11. Which three people in my life are those that “everyone always goes to” when they need advice, support, inspiration or help? What message can I send today to check in on those people?
  12. What do I not want to put back into my life when this is over? List them all. 
  13. What will I bring back that makes me more fulfilled and proud? List them all
  14. Right now, in this moment, what am I the most #batshitgrateful for?


Remember, only you have your own answers on how to overcome your overwhelm. These questions will hopefully start to lead you there.Tweet: only you have your own answers on how to overcome your overwhelm. These questions will hopefully start to lead you there. https://ctt.ec/D1d1v+ @maxiemccoy

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