Am in shocking bad form this evening, absolutely wicked. It’s been a long week – between work and various green ribbon adventures there’s been a lot going on and a lot of demands on my time and energy. For the most part, I’ve managed really well. I’ve done a full week in work, been up every morning to either run or do yoga, and kicked off my own efforts for the green ribbon campaign at home, in work and on radio. I’ve eaten properly, made sure I got to bed on time, been sociable…………….all the right things.

But it’s taken it’s toll, and I’m tired. Some time around lunchtime yesterday I felt my mood shift (I really can notice it happening so quickly sometimes, it’s like flicking a switch). Since then I’ve been more on edge, more easily irritated, less able to concentrate and obsessing a bit about Therapist again. It’s a bugger. I think I’ve gone from green back to yellow. Yup, just checked in with my traffic lights. Definitely yellow. Ok, so now I know. What can I do?

I need to slow down. I need to make time and space for myself to breathe and not feel under pressure. It’s funny, I didn’t feel under pressure this week. I was so pleased with myself for managing my early mornings, and did feel the better for it each day in terms of mood even if physically it was challenging. I get incredible energy from the work I do with See Change and it’s been great to see the campaign take off this week.

But, clearly the combination of it all was a bit too much. I’m up in Kildare at the moment with the kids – we landed around lunchtime, I stayed awake long enough to get something to eat and then passed out asleep for a good two hours this afternoon. I needed it, badly. I won’t realistically have the opportunity to spend Saturday afternoon asleep every weekend, so I’ll have to find a better way of pacing myself. Admittedly, there was an early morning wake up call from one of the small people this morning which didn’t help and can’t be predicted, but I guess it does show me a slight flaw in my great exercise/work/wonderwoman type plan………….there’s no wriggle room, no allowance for circumstances that might pull me from sleep. And sleep, alongside medication and exercise, is vital for me to stay well. 8 hours, every night. Tiredness is one of my biggest triggers.

I’m not sure where to tone it back, or how. I need yoga. I need to run. Both of these things need to happen in the morning to help me be well during the day, and also because if they don’t, it’s unlikely I’ll find time otherwise. I work full time. I have the kids. This was my fear when I went back to work at the beginning of the week – that managing everything I need to keep me well is simply too much and unsustainable given the other demands on my time. I don’t know, now probably isn’t the right time to be thinking about it as I’m definitely not at my most positive. I guess for now I’ll just try and get a good night’s sleep tonight and see if I can keep Bitchface at bay. She was shouty this evening. I’ll think on the rest tomorrow.

This article has 4 Comments

  1. You've been doing so much this week, and so well with everything. Remember to give yourself a huge pat on the back for that. You're going to have days when you feel great and energized, and days where it takes some mental effort not to slip down into the hole. And perhaps most important of all, remember to be forgiving and patient with yourself. I have yet to understand it, but self-compassion is supposed to be wonderful. 🙂

  2. Oh, you most be so frustrated. Having been on survival mode for so long now you're feeling more on top of things it's tempting to try and do too much. Big hugs to you.

    It's hope you find a way to get the balance right for you. Maybe exercising before work on alternate days until you get more back into the swing of things? Or doing more of your weeks exercise at the weekend when you have more chance for a half hour down time later in the day (even if that means sticking kids in front of a video for half an hour).

    Sometimes when we have busy weekends planned, I write "at home" the weekend before and after on the calender, to remind us not to cram too much in. Maybe you could plan "rest days" with no extras (aside from the minor details of life like work, childcare, housework etc) the day of radio interviews etc.

    (Hmm, I seem to have swapped dodgy metaphors for reams of unsolicited advice).

    Take care.

    R

    1. Helpful suggestions, not unsolicited advice, and thank you! In terms of my mornings I definitely find it easier if I'm getting up at the same time every day, otherwise it's far too tempting to go to bed thinking I'll allow myself a day off, and before I know it, I've had a solid week of days off (by day off I mean off early rising for exercise).
      Anyway, making a few changes here that should help bring about some balance. I hope! I'll keep you posted. x

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