Today I have been off work with a mildly scratchy throat. Thankfully it hasn’t impacted my energy levels, or affected my appetite, or made my mind feel foggy, too much. I managed to edit a fair amount of my book, read and respond to some blog posts, and do an small amount of exercise while my body works to recentre itself.
The scratchiness began to manifest just before the weekend, which thankfully spanned Saturday, Sunday, and Monday due to it being a holiday weekend here in New Zealand. Mostly I spent the days resting, to give myself the best chance of warding off my throat getting any worse. So far this has worked, and I took today (Tuesday) off work to rest further, rather than because my body desperately needed it. This decision was a good one, and going back to work tomorrow is a more intelligent proposition.
Regardless of how unwell I feel, I find it difficult to take even one day off work. What this pandemic has taught, and hopefully instilled in me, is how important a decision this is. Time off without needing to spend mental energy at my paid job is helpful. Time spent resting, and reading, and drinking a lot of water is necessary to recuperate. But the most important thing, is reducing the risk of spreading whatever illness I currently have. If we’re sick, the most useful thing we can do is stay home. We are not a bad human if we make this decision to stay away from work, but the opposite. We are being a good human, caring for ourselves and others.
During the weekend, I did struggle with finding motivation to do productive things around the house. Empty the dishwasher, help with tidying up the living area, have even an inkling of a thought that I would like to cook let alone have the mental capacity to. This frustrated me. Over the past three years, and the last year in particular, I have cultivated my brain response to be, “just do the thing.” If I walk past the dishwasher and it needs emptying, I empty it. If I see the kitchen needs a bit of tidy up, I tidy it. If I see the rubbish and recycling need taking down to the basement, I take the rubbish and recycling to the basement.
This weekend I didn’t have the mental capacity to do “just do the thing.” In writing this post, I have realised I need to forgive myself, and am working on that as we speak. That is something I can do right now which is helpful to my mental wellbeing. It might not have an obvious physical representation of its “usefulness,” but it will give me the mental capacity to do those household chores sooner, as I take pragmatic action to recover as quickly as I can.
Like most tools in my toolbox it’s not a foolproof process but a work in progress (WIP). I am a work in progress. We all are. And tomorrow is another chance for us all to learn, and grow, and help each other.
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Do you find time to engage in self-care within your soul?
How can you work on forgiving yourself for not making the best decisions yesterday, to be better prepared to dive headfirst into the beauty of tomorrow?
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We have value. So much more than we give ourselves credit for. Remember to take a deep breath and acknowledge this when you can. PEACE.