It’s Okay to Slow Down

As I said in the editor’s prologue for my last post, I’ve been working on finding balance lately—balance between work-work, play-work, and play…play. What I mean is, balancing the demands of my day job with the demands of all my not-day-job work (mostly podcasting, but also this blog). Then when you factor in the demands of my mental health, which demands a significant amount of brain-down-time, things get tricky. Especially when your calendar looks like mine on most weeks.

full-calendar

This is not unusual though there’s usually more podcasting and less hockey.

(I drafted this post on Sunday, & I admit not everything on the calendar has happened as planned, but *most* of it has, and some things got added that don’t appear in the picture!)

Clearly, I have some work to do to reach that point of balance. One new strategy is that I’ve been adding blocks of time on my calendar that just say “RESERVED FOR SANITY”. I suppose it’s too late to add that to this week. Maybe Saturday night. Though to be fair, the hockey games should be (mostly) relaxing fun (unless they go into overtime!) so it’s not quite as dire as it looks.

Anyway, I guess this is just one of my periodic updates to assure those who care that my near-silence here isn’t indicative of trouble—quite the opposite! It’s also a periodic reminder to myself that I need to be careful not to spread myself too thin. I can feel that I’m stretching to the point where I can feel my immune system crumbling, and that’s just no good. (It’s funny how you can be so in tune with your body’s normal rhythms that you can tell when you’re on the precipice of  illness.)

It’s also a periodic reminder to all of you of the same—it’s okay to slow down. It’s okay to take a day and just do nothing. In fact, sometimes it’s better than okay. It’s downright necessary. It can be difficult—whether that’s because you have a lot you need to get done, or like in my case, you have a lot you want to get done.

I am so lucky that I have a kabillionty opportunities to do fun things with great people. I get to podcast about entertaining media properties and write about things that are important to me and have a ball with in-Edmonton friends and travel to make convention appearances (and spend time with more friends) and that is all unbelievably fantastictacular. I couldn’t be more pleased. And my slight disbelief that this is my life and the deep gratitude I feel for these opportunities make it extra tough to say no to pretty much anything.

So that’s what I’m reeeeealllly working hard on right now. I’ve never been good at saying no to opportunities, in part because I used to get so few that I never needed to say no and in part because I hate Hate HATE disappointing people. But as my dear sweet wise parents keep reminding me, I’m no good to anyone if I’m not good to myself first, because if I burn myself out I won’t have any ability to take care of other people. When it comes down to it, that’s the best way to get through to me. Point out how whatever you want me to do is the best thing for people other than myself. (Perhaps not the most healthy thing ever, but hey—it works.)

This has been a more rambly update than I intended, but it’s no less true or heartfelt. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by ALL THE THINGS, even if The Things are good things, do try to take care of yourself. You deserve it. You need it. And the people around you probably need you to do it, even if they don’t realize it.

It just occurred to me that the tl;dr of this might be don’t expect regular blog updates for a while. LOL.

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