I’ve started this blog post like, oh I don’t know, approximately fifty thousand times (only a slight exaggeration) and I have been dissatisfied with every single topic I’ve attempted to write about. I’m feeling exhausted and simply don’t have the energy to write a meaningful blog post about…well, anything.
Anyone else feeling really inordinately tired lately?
I’m not sure what it is, if it’s physical or mental or emotional. Or perhaps all three. Most days my eyelids feel like they are made of concrete the second that I open them in the morning, in the wee hours before the sun starts painting the sky with the colors of dawn. The idea of facing another day, of going through the motions, seems daunting. Activities that I once loved to do, like play my ukulele or crochet or even read, seem like chores now. Impossible. How can I even muster the energy? And on top of that, how do I find the time, when I have classes and homework and clinical hours and work and….
At times it all seems like too much.
Societal norms dictate that we do all of those things and still find time for ourselves, to take a rest. But how can we rest when even resting seems overwhelming? When taking time out of our busy schedule just ends up being a time to sit and think about how busy and overwhelmed we are, to stew in it and let it absorb into our pores.
Guys, when did relaxation become so stressful?
I was with my brother recently, and he has an incredibly demanding job that causes him a ton of anxiety. Even when he took a break to have dinner with the family, he couldn’t stop thinking about the work he had awaiting him. You could sense the stress wafting off of him like heat off asphalt after a summer rain shower, and it colored his whole meal. There was no “break” in that dinner break.
I experience this too. Even as I finish writing a paper for school, I’m thinking about the next one, about the next class. I just had spring break but rather than feeling relaxed, all I can think of is the next ten weeks of my semester, of how much work I have to get done, of how stressed out I am going to be. Yep, you read that right—I’m stressed about the potential of being stressed in the future. I mean, how messed up is that?
It’s no wonder I’m so tired all the time.
I want there to be a simple solution to this, but of course there isn’t. A sweeping change would have to take place throughout society in which we all agreed that being productive all the time to the point that it causes stress is, in fact, not productive at all. That there is merit to taking a break. That rest is productive, too. It starts with me, with you, with us someone forcing rest into our busy schedule. No, not forcing—embracing. Because I’m just too tired to keep going like this. And for once—just once—I’d like to experience what it’s like to be really and truly and holistically rested. Because doesn’t that sound nice?
Kristy Cloetingh is a Philadelphia native who is currently trying to figure out her place in the world. Her passions include reading, singing, dancing, nature, yoga, chicken fingers, and puppies. An anorexia survivor and mental health warrior, Kristy has made it her life’s mission to remind every single person that their bodies and minds are worthy of unconditional love and respect, regardless of size, shape, or whatever “normal” is.