Wednesday, August 25, 2010

running on empty

i feel lately like i'm overdoing it. a lot. here's what happen when i overdo it. it's not linear. it's not curable with a nap and a movie. by the time i reach the overdone stage, all i'm capable of is sitting in a catatonic heap for 2-3 days, during which time i feel not relaxed in the slightest by anything, though in fact i'm taking time out to relax. by that point what's required is something more cathartic and jarring. like going on a hike, or flying to iceland, or cliff diving. short of taking up competitive rock climbing, WHAT should i do to avoid going into this extreme every two weeks? how? anyone else ever feel this way?

1 comment:

Capt. BS said...

I think I know three people who have been feeling this way a lot lately. Coincidentally (or not), they are all regulars here on this blog. Like many other Bad Places to be emotionally, I think the best remedy is to have a short-circuiting mechanism in place so that never get there.

Obviously, this is a lot easier to describe than it is to implement. The way I approach it is to (a) identify a clear, reliable leading indicator of the Bad Place -- e.g., teeth-griding, fist clenching, upper-back cramps/pain, consecutive nights of < 6 hours of sleep, snapping at people -- and make it a trigger for your action plan; (b) formulate an escape plan to remove yourself from the factors drawing you toward the Bad Place -- e.g., counting to ten, going for a run, turning off your phone while you read a book/watch a movie -- which will also will make you conscious of the fact that you have the power to change your trajectory if you so choose; and finally (c) accept that you will not always be able to identify the trigger and/or execute the escape plan, but that you will get better at it over time, and you will feel more and more like you're in control of your own life.