Tired

Tired head image

Appearance of actual frog may vary

Those of you who have been reading me for a long time know that from time-to-time I have relapses of anxiety and/or depression. This has been going on all my adult life so it’s really not a big deal. I manage myself as best I can, take a low dose of meds constantly, and look out for triggers and warning signs. Signs that I’m heading down that slippery slope again.

Last year was a huge work year for me and at the end of last year I was very, very tired. I was so tired that each night before a work commitment, I prayed that it would be cancelled.

I still had so many urgent things on my to-do list by the day before Christmas, that I wanted to cry. Most of those are still there – in fact the list is growing daily.

The sense of despair I felt just before Christmas was my first warning. Overwhelming, bone-crushing fatigue was another.

My finger nails have started to split and peel in layers. My mouth is filled with ulcers.

The idea of having to start work again in January made me teary and filled me with anger and resentment.

My system was trying to tell me something.

It was something absurdly mundane that finally made me pay attention. It’s three-quarters through January, and my Christmas tree is still up. I’m not someone who rushes to get the tree down the moment January 6 arrives, but having it still up at this point is unusual, even for me. I keep looking at it, registering that it needs to come down. Anxiety and exhaustion grip my chest and so I walk past it. Tomorrow. Or the next day. I’ve stopped turning the tree lights on. Isn’t that enough?

I had a much-needed holiday in early January, so I know how ungrateful I sound. That holiday was not enough. Having another break is not an option (did I mention my to-do-list?)

Here I am, at the start of the year, already struggling; already barely dragging myself from week to week. Fatigue is the biggest trigger for anxiety for me and I’m well-and-truly heading for a crash.

What to do?

Right now I’m doing as little work as possible, given my workload, and spacing it out. I’m trying to get more sleep. I’m setting myself one small thing to do each day. I’m taking iron and Vitamin C.

There’s another part of me, though, that is screaming. Not only is it looking at my to-do list and having an aneurysm, it’s telling me countless other things as well. It’s telling me I have to stop doing superannuation work, because that’s not why I set up my own company. It’s telling me I have to write my own training material and market that. It’s telling me to get that stand-up routine organised. It’s telling me I have three books to write, a blog to run, a comedy blog link-up to organise. A speaking career to investigate. It’s telling me I don’t spend enough time with my son. It’s telling me I’ve neglected my creative side. It’s telling me it’s time for a new career (again).

My brain is yelling at me to take action while my body is telling me to slow down.

I suspect I’ve seen the signs that I was on that slippery slope a bit too late, and I’ve already got my toes in that craptacular depression/anxiety pool. Time will tell.

I’m off now to try – again – to take down the Christmas tree. It won’t matter if it’s still up in February, right?

How have you started 2014?

 

Comments

  1. Just tell everyone you’re excited for Christmas 2014 & leave it up 😉
    Hope you get the rest you need – I know that fatigued feeling & it’s hard.

  2. Or put a big plastic bag over it and put it in the attic, ready for next year. Overwhelm… xxx

    • Five Frogs says:

      Overwhelm is right, Dayle. You’ve seen the tree – it’s too big to do that. I’ll get there. Now to put a plastic bag over some other stuff and shove it in the attic!

  3. Oh My Frog!

    Last year a new novel decided to make me write it, then four e-books told me they needed to be written, and then there was all the usual end of year stuff that needed to be done so I decided to take Dec and Jan off from blogging. It has been much needed.

    I also wrote a list last year in October or so, since I would be writing so many books and what they needed and spaced everything out across each month until April as you can only do editing and assessing of books for so long before getting them done and up for sale.

    I completed most of that list each month and stopped worrying if I didn’t get something done, I just added that to the next month.

    What I did realise was that the small things were done faster than the big things and I tried to evenly space everything out. I did have a lot of late nights but since I didn’t need to get up early there was no issue. Hence, many things have been crossed off the list and the list has gotten smaller.

    With only two weeks left in Jan, I start blogging again on Feb 1st, I quickly came up with a few ideas last night of which to blog about that should get me through at least five months of blogging, since I will again be stopping come Dec 1st this year and having Dec and Jan off.

    My blog turned five back on Jan 1 and I turn forty in May. I have many other things and issues to deal with and wish to God I could change them. I have no idea how or even if it will ever happen but I march onwards because I don’t want to go backwards.

    You need to listen to your body. It’s clearly exhausted and the only things I can suggest is getting an overhaul from your doctor, maybe some more vitamins. Really reading that list and deciding if some things are worth it, getting rid of the small things first, getting rid of things you DON’T want to do or be a part of. Handing on some of the responsibility to someone else, moving on, stopping, letting some, if not all, of it go.

    You are being told to slow down by your body and the Universe, you need to listen otherwise you could end up in a hospital with far greater issues.

  4. Oh gorgeous one – this time of year is not a great one for so many.

    Can I offer one tiny piece of unsolicited advice? All those things screaming at you (ie this stuff >> “It’s telling me I have to stop doing superannuation work, because that’s not why I set up my own company. It’s telling me I have to write my own training material and market that. It’s telling me to get that stand-up routine organised. It’s telling me I have three books to write, a blog to run, a comedy blog link-up to organise. A speaking career to investigate. It’s telling me I don’t spend enough time with my son. It’s telling me I’ve neglected my creative side. It’s telling me it’s time for a new career (again)”)

    Can you just pick one? And start doing something towards that ONE thing, for 15 minutes a day? Don’t beat yourself up if that 15 mins doesn’t happen. But just tell yourself you’re going to do it.

    Tiny little things – they add up pretty quickly on the negative side of the ledger. So it makes sense that they’d add up pretty quickly on the positive side too … xxx

  5. Well, given how clear and coherent this blog post is, I reckon you know what’s right for you at the moment. Just keep doing that, and it will all work out! 🙂

    • Five Frogs says:

      Thanks JAJ. The vitamins are already working, it’s true – otherwise this blog post would never have been written!

  6. I agree with Kelly – try one thing at a time and focus on that one thing, even if it for a week. Sometimes I have been known to write ‘have shower’ on my list of things to do, just so I can cross it off and get a sense of achievement. One other piece of gratuitous advice – if you’re having a busy day with a big list of ‘things to do’, do NOT add one more thing to it if that thing is not urgent and can wait until another day. As for the Christmas tree, last time I checked there are THREE people in your household. Delegate like an olympic champion

    • Five Frogs says:

      Thanks Meggsie. I’ve tried to delegate going to the supermarket. I got a “maybe”. I hope that actually means “sure”, xxx

  7. Leave the tree, it is now just a lounge tree 🙂 sending you big loves and I’ll hug you IRL soon and give you cake xxx

  8. Chocolate cake

  9. Sue knight says:

    See this is the problem with lists. Don’t make em bc they flicker like a faulty neon light 24/7. You are well aware of all that you wanted to do and haven’t got round to doing so ban list writing and pat yourself on the back for all you do achieve.

  10. As we speak I am looking over at my Xmas tree, that is also still up. When people (my mum) comment I just say “what tree?”! I’m sorry to hear all that you are going through. I’m a list person also and put my essentials at the top and others below, which is why I haven’t got around to do any of the 5 guest posts I have been asked to in the past 3 months 🙁 Work cripples me also, it sucks the life out of me, my kids have a cranky mum until my deadlines are met, and don’t even get me started on how I get mean to the hubby. But there is no solution, we need the money so I can’t work less. Maybe better time management might help me. Hugs lovely xxx

  11. OMG If it’s any comfort … That sounds much like my life. However, I must say I’ve done a lot of prevention stuff this year. For example, I didn’t put up the Christmas tree!

    My plan is simple. Get more sleep. Hope I can implement it …

    All the best for 2014. Baby steps and be kind to yourself xo

Speak Your Mind

*