Too many people are running around like demented gerbils, constantly repeating the refrain “I’m so tired.” Excessive tiredness is the cause of over 40% of car accidents and more than that in work-related accidents. You could say we have an epidemic of fatigue. So what can we do about it? Well first, get it diagnosed; fatigue can be the forerunner of disease. If the problem is a too-busy schedule, the solution is easier: drop a bunch of stuff out of the schedule. Stop trying to do so many things that there is not adequate time for rest.
Rest is key to ending fatigue and good recuperative rest is vitally important to health. Children and animals are good examples of what a good night’s sleep can do for one-they bounce around after waking up, full of energy and rarin’ to get about the day’s business of fun. Somewhere around our teenage years most people start to lose that restful energy replenishment. As school and job worries stack up we sacrifice our health in order to get more done. Things as simple as a tonsillectomy can cause of drop of 5% in our energy levels… permanently (too bad this was common practice before studies were done to show this deleterious effect).
Simple fatigue busters are what should be obvious by now: get some good sleep and take breaks throughout the day. Instead of eating that processed food/high carbohydrate lunch, go meditate for 30 minutes and eat a salad. Take a good multi-vitamin/multi-mineral supplement (realize that cheap equals useless in the vitamin world). Take time to have fun-a foreign concept to too many people these days. Concentrate on one hobby or sports activity and get really good at it before taking on another.
Take time to plan out the schedule for the next day, including the clothes to be worn. It takes far less time to decide what to wear if done while awake; morning choices can not only be wrong but also involve too much indecision. Making a good healthy lunch the night before also cuts time off the next day and automatically reduces stress. The fewer decisions one has to make at the start of the day, the less stress one is starting the day with. Try it and you’ll see what I mean.
Scheduling some ‘me time’ is really important too, especially for busy women with families. Take a hint from men: create a woman-cave and use it every day. Included in the woman-cave is a telephone to call a girl friend at the end of the day. Women need to talk… to share both frustrations and ideas. Sharing is an automatic stress-buster for women. Men, on the other hand, need to be left alone when they come home, for at least an hour. In both cases, we need a little time to shift gears and ease into the home life; to de-stress and disconnect from the busy day.
Find something that helps you to de-stress, whether that be listening to music, meditating, talking to others, watching television, or just sitting quietly in Nature. Find what works for you and use it on a daily basis; your life will be better for it and certainly less stressful. If you are one who just can’t relax, go take some lessons from someone who can teach that vital skill to you. Stop with the “but you don’t understand… I can’t take the time” and just do it. YOU are the only one who can make the changes necessary for a less stressful life.
AÃ¯Â¿Â½2010 Dr.Valerie Olmsted All Rights Reserved