I woke up this morning and my first instinct was to hit the snooze button and stay in bed. I remember when I was so depressed that it was nearly impossible to summon the energy to face the day, or when I was in so much pain that it hurt to put my feet on the floor and start moving. But once I started treatment, I only struggle to get out of bed when I’ve done something like stay up too late the night before binge-watching Netflix. Much better reason, if you ask me.
I got ready for work and headed out the door. It used to be so much harder to muster up the energy to get myself dressed and prepared enough to face the world outside of my safe and comfortable little house. Today, though, I was honestly excited to get to work. I’m taking on a bigger role there now and I was recently assigned a new project. It’s been really great to have something to look forward to and put some of my energy into. It turns out that keeping things buried inside was taking up much more effort than I realized. Now that I talk about things more readily and deal with most conflicts as they arise, I have more mental energy to devote to things that matter to me: like getting a promotion!
Once I was at work, I checked over my calendar to see what events were coming up this week. Then I made a to-do list based on what I needed to be prepared for those events. With my therapist, I have learned to prioritize these lists. I then am able to tackle the list in order of importance, and the stuff that doesn’t get done can be shifted to the next day. It has really helped me ease my anxiety—I no longer feel like I have to be doing all the things, all the time. I am even able to eat my lunch away from my desk now! It also turns out that I’m more productive when I’m not worrying about all the stuff I have to do, so I don’t often have to stay late to get things done anymore.
After work, I went with a friend to the gym. This was something else that I had been seriously neglecting—my own health. I didn’t have the energy for the gym and I didn’t really see a need to take care of myself. I didn’t believe I was worth it and had a million other excuses at the ready. I wouldn’t say I work out all that hard; today I just did some laps at the pool. But I feel so good afterwards that even if the scale doesn’t go down, I don’t care. I feel better and I’m making better choices, and that is the part that matters.
I knew I’d be hungry after all that and would be tempted to have a bunch of garbage food for dinner. It always winds up making me feel crummy about myself and sick to my stomach. So I planned ahead and put a few ingredients into my slow cooker before I left for work. When I came home, the house smelled delicious and dinner was waiting. I had a healthy meal of balsamic chicken and sweet potatoes. I even steamed some veggies in the microwave to round out the meal.
When I climb into bed tonight, I will be focused on all the things I did well today. I will take the time to be grateful for the things I have. I have a notebook on my nightstand where I can write down any thoughts I might have to help clear my mind before I fall asleep, whether they are positive or negative. I sleep much better at night when I do that.
That’s a typical day for me now. What are your days like?