I am constantly exhausted, lacking energy and ambition. This is my “leveled” state. I get my job done at work but it is a daily struggle to stay focused and to keep the exhaustion at bay just to get through the day. The second I walk out the door from work my body goes in to shutdown mode. About half way home, keeping my eyes open is a struggle (I work 10-15 minutes from home). The thought of doing anything more when I get home is overwhelming, which results in me spending the next few hours being held captive on my couch.
My social life? PSHT…what social life? I’m too damn exhausted to have a social life. I have a list of things I would love to do but, because I’m exhausted all of the time, I never do any of them. I want to meet like-minded people and I can do that by joining groups/activities that I either want to do or enjoy doing. I want to socialize in the following ways:
- Participate in a drum circle
- Spend more time outside in nature
- Stand up paddle-boarding (SUP)
- Coffee dates
- Dinner and movie with friends
- Go on weekend or day trips to quaint local towns
I do none of them though.
Other things I would love to do, but don’t due to feeling exhausted 24/7/365:
- Finish minimalising my apartment
- Cook dinner every night
- Finish my undergrad degree
- Become a certified Life Coach
- Start my Master’s Degree
- Read more
- Write more
- Make better use of my time
As mentioned in previous posts I’ve been gifted with depression, anxiety, C-PTSD/developmental trauma, and adult ADHD (w/o the H). I have a horrible past of various forms of abuse. I see a therapist (2 now actually, one is geared mostly towards nutrition), and I also have a psychiatrist. I keep a small pharmacy in my medicine cabinet to assist with all of this. As resistant as I am to taking meds, they do seem to help quite a bit.
I don’t eat well or often, my diet is shit. I sleep about as well as I eat. I often times stay up later than I intend to. I take a sleep aid, but the sleep aid is only effective once I take it. I’ve always had sleep problems. Before I started using a sleep aid it would take me at least 30 minutes to fall asleep and that was on a good night. Many nights it would be upwards of an hour of tossing and turning and thinking. Once I fell asleep, staying asleep was a trick. Now with the sleep aid, I do sleep better (for the most part). However, if I plan to be in bed sleeping by 10pm, I can’t wait to take my sleeping pill until 11pm. Generally it is about 30 minutes after taking the pill that I can hardly see straight and must go to bed. This only leaves me with roughly 6-6.5 hours of sleep every night of the week. I need more than that!
I could blame my exhaustion problem on my past and my mental health issues due to my past, I could justify that I have poor eating habits because I am so exhausted I can’t cook or make healthy eating choices, or I could blame my sleeping problems.
…I could take accountability for my own shortcomings when it comes to taking care of myself. Now, in part, my past and the mental health struggles I have because of it do play a significant role in how I got to where I am with feeling exhausted all of the time.
But that’ll only take me so far…
As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I also have boundary issues. Even though the boundary issues also tie into my past, I am not living there anymore. At some point I have to step back up and take control otherwise I will never be living here, in this moment.
I know getting outside more, being more active, socializing more, yoga, meditation, living minimally, and eating healthier will help with the exhaustion but why can’t I do any of these things?
After spending time thinking about why I don’t do any of the things I know to do to help me feel better it occurred to me; in my mind I’ve been thinking I have to accomplish all of these things at the same time. Even if I wasn’t starting on a foundation of being exhausted, the thought of having to accomplish all of this at the same time would be exhausting in and of itself.
I’ve decided I need to create a plan and follow through on the plan. My plan needs to be in bite size as to not feel to overwhelmed and feed into the exhaustion. I can readily do some of the smaller things simultaneously.
- I can be in bed by 10pm tonight
- Tomorrow I can start eating easy breakfasts (hard-boiled eggs and piece of fruit) and easy lunches (rotisserie chicken salads)
- I can plan the weeks menu today
- I can start eating healthier today/tonight
- I can meditate for 5 to 10 minutes daily (I’ll start doing it before bed to clear my mind and slow my thoughts)
Doing this for a week or two should help decrease my exhaustion and increase my energy.
Once I have more energy I can move into bigger goals, such as:
- Being more physically active
- attending groups/activities that I’ve been interested in
- Finish my apartment
Then finally I will be able to achieve my biggest goals:
- Undergrad Degree
- Certified Life Coach
- Master’s Degree
If I look at this one chunk/piece at a time it doesn’t feel so overwhelming which only fuels the exhaustion. When I look at it in chunks, I have hope that I can achieve these things. I just need to kick exhaustion’s butt and that starts with the first step!