I don't know why I forget how important this strategy is. I will find myself so tired and just dragging myself throughout the day completely forgetting that I know how to change that feeling. It just isn't something that comes naturally for me.
Years ago I went to see Dr. McDonald in Buckley, she is a naturopathic doctor and I had tried other doctors with no relief from my problem. What was my problem, fatigue. My every waking thought was "I'm so tired." One of the first questions she asked me is what I did for fun. I didn't have an answer because I wasn't doing anything for fun. She encouraged me to work on that. She also gave me an Adrenal Gland support as I had nearly exhausted my adrenal glands. It was amazing, after a few weeks I felt so much better.
I really did feel great for a long time. Then I started having heart palpitations (see my Heart Pain post earlier for more details). I was diagnosed with a Mitral Valve Prolapse, the interesting thing is the best thing for it is exercise. I remember one day seeing my trainers at Body Logic (see them in Bonney Lake, they are wonderful) and my heart was hurting so bad, but my cardiologist said to think of it like a headache, but it is a heart ache. So we went cautiously through with the workout and before I knew it, I was feeling really good. In researching MVP I came across a saying, "fatigue begets fatigue." The more we give in to the fatigue the more tired we become.
I have come to realize that when the physical fatigue sets in is when I need to move my body, to get the blood pumping through my heart and then I feel better. But when the emotional fatigue sets in, it is time to do something fun.
My therapist talks a lot about "flow." The first time she mentioned it, I didn't get it. So she asked me what is it that when I am doing it, the whole day could go by and I wouldn't have even noticed it because I am enjoying it so much. Of course, on the spot I couldn't think of anything. So I tried to pay more attention to when my day felt like it was "flowing" and when it felt like I was "pushing" through it.
Pushing is just when I am trying to get things done and I don't have the energy (physical or mental) but I just keep going (this is also when I find that I end up hurting myself by falling or some such thing). Pushing does not create more energy, pushing drains energy. Admittedly sometimes we have no choice, there are things we have to push through, but once you are finished, you need to do something to replenish your energy. This is where the flowing comes in. I have come to realize that creating things (whether scrapbooking, card making, needlework, doing something decorative in my home, shopping for creative type things, etc.) is where I find my flow. Also, writing is very energizing for me.
When I am drained and I need to re-energize I know it is time to pick something that helps me "flow." Sometimes it is something as simple as listening to music. Sometimes it is something bigger like exercise. Either way, when I'm feeling like I am run down, instead of giving in to the fatigue, I need to do something energizing, whether it be emotional or physical depends on how I am feeling. Sometimes, it might be both, that's when something like Wii Just Dance is perfect, fun and exercise at the same time.
I just need to remember "fatigue begets fatigue" and to do something different than succumbing to the fatigue. And also to remember that creating energy in your body comes from within, from the things you enjoy doing and help your day flow.