There it was! I could see it and boy could I feel it, my tell-tale itchy eye was back and I knew what it meant. I’m run down and exhausted.
My weary self needs a damn good rest.
I’ve pushed my limits mentally, emotionally and physically of late, and ignored all the earlier warning signs to slow down. The stiffness in my neck, the grinding of my teeth and the crazy frustration I’ve had with the very little things.
Having pushed through this feeling many times over, I know that when I keep going it doesn’t end well and nor is it fun to be around.
But when I’m caught up in my go-go-go mind stopping for a break isn’t easy.
I want to keep going at least until the emails are read, phone calls made, the house is tidy, the kids are in bed, dogs are in their kennels and I know everyone’s expectations of me have been met. And that’s the danger…. When I’m already worn out and I keep going I end up over wound, bright-eyed and feeling super human.
And this is when it gets messy, I then start to think I’m okay and not tired.
I think I’ll be fine because I’ve worked harder than this before, or I think that other people do it.
I like to forget that I’ve got sick, developed rashes, neck aches, and had overwhelming emotional outbursts of tears and tantrums. That the resulting guilt and frustration have started a vicious cycle that’s consumed me and my life seems harder than it is because I’m so depleted and cranky.
The truth is when I’m exhausted from late nights, early mornings and hectic days I automatically switch into overdrive, which really means getting things done at the expense of my physical health, relationships and emotional care.
You know it too, right? When your mind and body are so overcharged and worn out that your emotions explode and your body seems to fall apart.
You find yourself honking your horn madly in the car park. Yelling at the kids with a rage you don’t understand. Complaining about every little thing at work. Picking silly fights at home with your partner. Sobbing on the couch with the dog on your lap.
Your body is aching, your mind is a jumble and despite all your fatigue you lie awake worrying half the night.
You’ve been working so hard you just want to cry and yet you also don’t want to stop.
It’s when you feel too busy to stop that you need to stop more than ever.
So, when there is more to do than hours in your workable day (and there will be) don’t push yourself until the cracks appear. Know when to call it quits, and do it well before you hit your mental and emotional limits.
I know you want to get it all done, I do too. And you’ll do it with ease once you’ve re-energised your mind and body, and recharged your patience and understanding too.
Because no matter how capable you are exhaustion will never bring out the best in you.
Don’t wait for your health and relationships to suffer, (once the itchy eye begins I know I’ve gone too far). Get to know your limits, respect the warning signs and stop for some rest.
This is your one great life, decide to live it both fully and with restful ease.
It’s all up to you.