This weekend, I was exhausted. My body wanted to nap, and then nap some more. This meant that the energy I needed to get all my many projects done that I was “saving for the weekend” was non-existent. It’s frustrating, right? The weekend (or your time off) finally comes and all the things you’ve saved for when you are free, are now available to you, but all you have the energy to do is veg out and nap. Or is that just me?
So I looked back on my week and started assessing what the issue might have been. Why the total exhaustion? Ohhhhhhhh, right. My calendar showed that every day after work my life was filled with activities. Did I want to do every single one of those things, YES! Did I have the energy for them? Oh wait, no not really…
Shonda Rimes wrote a book called “The Year of Yes.” The book chronicles her recognition that “no” was a lot easier for her to say than “yes.” When she was called out on it, she made a decision to say yes to things. Especially things that challenged her out of her comfort zone.
I have had a similar problem but in the other direction. I have often said “yes” to more things than I have the energy for. Additionally by saying yes to so many things I haven’t made a lot room for activities that challenge/excite me. In my case, this requires me to put myself on my own calendar. I rarely cancel plans on others, but I will cancel on myself easily, especially if I don’t designate time for myself. Admittedly, the first time you put yourself on your calendar, it may feel a little weird. Do it anyway, and keep your date with yourself.
Self-care is not a weekend/time-off thing. It’s a 7-day a week thing. It has to be, to be effective. Practicing self care at work and after work sets the stage for your longer stretches of time off. Look at your calendar from last week. Whether your rolled into the weekend exhausted or refreshed take notes on what worked or didn’t work. How much of your time was spent on others? Do you see yourself anywhere on your calendar? Depending on your personality type and where you get your energy (being alone or being around others), aim for a week where what energizes YOU is sprinkled throughout the week.
One added bonus of peppering your week with self care energizers, is that when the weekend comes, there’s not as much pressure to make it everything your week wasn’t. Instead you can just continue where you left off.
So that’s my goal for this week. You in?
Take care of YOU.