Today has been a bit of a doing day… and it has reminded me how much self-care can feel like a chore, an unwanted daily task we should complete. Sometimes it is easy, sometimes you start off fine and then you get half way through and wonder why you started. Sometimes you just can’t get started at all… that can be fine… for a time… but you always need to pick back up and then its even harder because you let it go for awhile.
Today we got the kitchen straight, went shopping for food, did a wash load of clothes each and cooked a nice Sunday lunch. We spaced this out with some TV and gaming at intervals for downtime. So all in all a positive self care day but at the same time I’ve resented it in parts. I still need to put tomorrows lunch together so I don’t end up doing it last minute in the morning (again).
Balancing life can be frustrating, the world moves at 100miles an hour and if we don’t move with it we can be left behind… but is it a bad thing to move at your own pace? I’ve been making a lot of general sweeping statements about how I feel and what I know of depression but it is always important to find your own balance and your own pace. When I write these entries I always want to write everything in my brain at once and have to slim down to just one process.
We need to sleep, shower, shave, brush our teeth, comb/dry our hair, put our makeup on, make sure we have breakfast, make sure we drink, make sure we have lunch, make sure we have tea. We have to go to work, focus on our job and then we socialise and spread ourselves out even further. Each thing by itself is probably fine, but it sounds like a lot… doesn’t it? Fitting it all in can feel like playing tetris until the most tedious activity is dropped… self care.
I wanted to sit and game today, but I had to keep stopping, getting up and looking after things. Gaming has its own aspect of self care but only when rationed and not just used as a method for procrastination from something that needs doing. I do wonder when an entertainment activity is nurturing to our minds, when it is just filling a vacuum of time or when we are using it as an excuse to ‘relax’ and get nothing sustaining done.
Something that has popped up on facebook today has had me thinking a lot. It should be visible as the feature image. People can be terrified to say hello to their friends, many of us are trapped in the sensation that we aren’t good enough to be contacted or its not our place to force ourselves on friends. We think if friends haven’t contacted us then they mustn’t want to be our friends or talk to us, maybe we did something wrong or they just feel sorry for us.
If you relate so this, you are probably like me, the kind of person who finds it hard to understand why people like them. I am detachedly aware that I am a nice person, I look after my friends and pay attention to their needs as and when I can and support them whenever possible. I can be smart and witty but I can also be the most dense person that ever exists… but am I really interesting? Why would people want to spend their precious time with me anyway? Sound familiar?
Even if it doesn’t there’s probably been the paranoia moment trying to decide why someone hasn’t answered a message or if you should even send one out. You haven’t seen a friend in awhile so you want to say hi, but maybe its been too long? Would you have anything to talk about anymore? Or the reverse of you only saw them yesterday so would saying something now be seen as smothering? Then you want to be clear your not trying to smother them an end up on some verbal diarrhoea loop about how not smothering you are being and guess what… self fulfilling prophecy.
I’m not sure myself where the right balance is, we all have busy lives, it may take awhile to get a message back. We don’t need to suddenly run off in our heads and think the worst. I always appreciate a friend saying hello, it means they are thinking of me. I’ve seen a message and meant to reply to it then noticed it unanswered days later. It doesn’t mean I care any less for that friend just that I was busy when the message came in. At one point I would be freaked if my partner didn’t text me back and I’d think they’d crashed the car etc etc… but I’ve (mostly) gotten over that. The chances of the big bad are very low and if we expect it all the time we are only going to wear ourselves thin.
I could go no forever on this one so I’ll probably stop there. Hopefully it will at least do for you what it did for me today, seeing just how widespread this belief is and how fallible it is. My parting statement is to just say Hi, worst can happen is they are busy and don’t see it but you might just reconnect.
Here we go again… it is Sunday night, the dreaded Monday looms like an evil Goliath before us… bad self care award. That is what springs straight to mind for a lot of us right? There has to be a way to turn this way of thinking around. I’m not sure what it is yet but it is out there… the backup is always apathy. If you don’t care about work it can;t stress you out, you just go and earn your money. It works for some people, but I always think too much and care too much. especially about the wrong things.