Inspirational Quotes When Feeling Overwhelmed

When we feel overwhelmed, it can be all-consuming.  We can feel like we’re stuck and that we’ll never get out from under it. The weight of the world seems to be on our shoulders. It’s hard to see a way out.

But there is always a way out. We just need to find the inspiration to see it.

If you or someone you know is feeling overwhelmed right now, there are inspirational, uplifting and positive words that we can read and share that can help us to feel inspired again and to shift our focus to ‘the light at the end of the tunnel.’

So instead of saying ‘other people have been through far worse‘ (because, honestly how does that even help?) We can use inspiring words instead.


Inspirational Quotes When Feeling Overwhelmed


“Life has many ways of testing a person’s will, either by having nothing happen at all or by having everything happen all at once.” Paulo Coelho


“Getting knocked down in life is a given. Getting up and moving forward is a choice.” Zig Ziglar


“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret to getting started is breaking your overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks and then starting on the first one.” Mark Twain


“Do what you can, with what you’ve got, where you are.” Theodore Roosevelt


“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes…Including you.” Anne Lamott


“You don’t drown by falling into water. You only drown if you stay there.” Zig Ziglar


“A woman who lives with the stress of an overwhelmed schedule will often ache with the sadness of an underwhelmed soul.” Lysa Terkeurst


“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” Lao Tzu


“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” Henry Ford


“When life gets hectic and you feel overwhelmed, take a moment to focus on the people and things you are most grateful for. When you have an attitude of gratitude, frustrating troubles will fall by the wayside.” Dana Arcuri


“You can’t calm the storm, so stop trying. What you can do is calm yourself. The storm will pass.” Timber Hawkeye


“Some days you will feel like the ocean. Some days you will feel like you are drowning in it.” Lora Mathis


“If you can’t fly, run. If you can’t run, walk. If you can’t walk, crawl, but by all means, keep moving.” Martin Luther King, Jr.


“Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is relax.” Mark Black


“You can do anything—but not everything.” David Allen


“Your calm mind is the ultimate weapon against your challenges.” Bryant McGill


“If we don’t see a failure as a challenge to modify our approach, but rather as a problem with ourselves, as a personality defect, we will immediately feel overwhelmed.” Anthony Robbins


“Sound character provides the power with which a person may ride the emergencies of life instead of being overwhelmed by them. Failure is… the highway to success.” Og Mandino


“Our greatest battles are with our minds.” Jameson Frank


“The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” Stephen Covey


“Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action.” Walter Anderson


“Promise me you will not spend so much time treading water and trying to keep your head above the waves that you forget, truly forget, how much you have always loved to swim.” Tyler Knott Gregson


“Maybe you have to know the darkness before you can appreciate the light.” Madeleine L’Engle


“Sometimes you just need to be selfish and take care of you. If they love you, they’ll understand.” Robert Tew


“Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than defending or hanging on.” Eckhart Tolle


“One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one’s work is terribly important.” Bertrand Russell


“Of all the things that matter, that really and truly matter, working more efficiently and getting more done, is not one of them.” Mike Dooley


“There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will.” Epictetus


“We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” Joseph Campbell


“Worry often gives a small thing a big shadow.” Swedish proverb


“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” Jon Kabat-Zinn


“Rule number one: Don’t sweat the small stuff. Rule number two: It’s all small stuff.” Robert S. Eliot


“For us, there is only the trying. The rest is not our business.” T.S. Eliot


“Many of us feel stress and get overwhelmed not because we’re taking on too much, but because we’re taking on too little of what really strengthens us.” Marcus Buckingham


“You can’t go back and make a new start, but you can start right now and make a brand new ending.” James R. Sherman


What do you need when you’re feeling overwhelmed?

While it’s different for everyone and for each different situation, it’s good to get in touch with yourself and work out what you need when you’re feeling overwhelmed.

Do you need rest? Do you need to make a plan? Break down a task into smaller chunks? Ask for help? Reschedule something? Get feedback from someone? Take something off your plate completely?

Ask yourself these questions and go from there.


How do you stay positive when overwhelmed?

One way is to read and share inspiring quotes and positive stories. When we are feeling down, it can be helpful to read words of encouragement from others. It can remind us that we are not alone, and that there is hope.

We can also stay positive when we take action and break down a task or situation to smaller ‘bite-size’ pieces that we can then work on without the overwhelm. 

There are many wonderful quotes and stories out there that can help to uplift us when we are feeling overwhelmed. For more reading like this, be sure to check out:


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