Mental Energy & Exhaustion

Even though I sleep A LOT, I am always extremely tired. When I wake up in the morning, I don’t feel rested. It’s a strange feeling to live with. It’s not that I feel physically tired. I mean, it takes a lot of energy to do the insane workouts that I do every day. Now that I think about it, my body very rarely feels fatigued. The tiredness I’m experiencing is mental, not physical. It feels almost as though my body has two completely separate storehouses of energy, and my mental storehouse has been empty for a long time now.

From the moment I wake up in the morning, a battle begins inside of my head. I start listing off all of the different things I’ve got to do before I leave for work, throughout the day, etc. I am critiquing and criticizing myself almost immediately after opening my eyes. I’m experiencing a mental beatdown every minute of the day. It’s no wonder that meditating and doing yoga is such a peaceful time for me. My practice is the one time a day when my mind actually gets to rest and just be.

I am always telling myself that I need to make time to rest. I never seem to be able to keep myself from cramming in tons of tasks every day though. Working full-time, teaching yoga, and taking care of a house all by myself doesn’t leave me much wiggle room for relaxation. But today I realized that at the very least I can try to afford myself some mental rest. There is absolutely no need for me to constantly be consumed by racing thoughts and self assessments. I don’t know how much control over it I really have, given that it is part of my anxiety disorder. However, I’ve also never taken the initiative to try before.

Today my intention is to rest, to surrender to the moment, to just soak in my surroundings, to just be. I’m always too afraid to even try to let go of my constant planning and self-talk. I’m afraid of losing track of all the things I have to do. I’m afraid of forgetting something important. I know that even purposefully putting everything on hold for one day won’t be the end of the world though. Today the only thing that matters is being kind to myself. Today is my day for rest, recovery, and self-love. What could be more important than that?

7 ways to practice self-care during the COVID-19 outbreak | Cincinnati &  Hamilton County Public Library

Searching for Happiness

Three days into my new, more normal meal plan and I have already started to have doubts. Thoughts of reverting back to my old ways. My brain keeps replaying the shocked comments I received from everyone over the summer when they noticed how much weight I had lost. I am afraid of what they think now that I’ve definitely gained most of it back already. (I refuse to weigh myself anymore for my own mental health, so I can’t be sure.) I don’t know why I care what anyone else thinks though.

At the time it seems impossible to forget, but I have to keep reminding myself now that I wasn’t happy then. Those comments meant nothing to me. I was a little hurt by them to be honest. No one seems excited or happy for me. They looked at me with concern. And I was embarrassed to be looked at at all. I didn’t know what to say, and I was surprised. I still didn’t think I looked much smaller. I certainly didn’t think I looked better. And most importantly I wasn’t happy. Not at all.

My brain has always told me that if I can make myself perfect and beautiful, that I will be happy. I thought foolishly that maybe once I showed myself that didn’t work, I would stop insisting upon that notion. Yet it persists. Maybe my mind just needs something to latch onto. After all, I don’t know what would truly make me happy.

I have felt numb for such a long time now. I don’t mean depressed or anything necessarily negative. Just numb. Nothing. Lack of feeling. I have many small pleasures and moments of joy here and there, but nothing has the ability to deeply move me anymore. It seems like I feel more alive in my dreams now. And part of me is happy with things staying this way. I may not feel much passion or excitement, but nothing hurts me either. And I am so afraid to hurt. I guess I’ll just keep drifting for awhile.

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