fitness

Being honest with yourself about sleep and self care

SamB shared a fun meme this week, and it resonated deeply.

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The picture has a bowl of chocolate ice cream and the caption reads “Be honest with yourself: are you getting enough rest and are you eating enough ice cream?”

Now set aside issues regarding dairy and sweets and think about the message in this meme.

First are you getting enough rest? Probably not. I know I haven’t been getting my full complement. Part of it stems from needing to get stuff done. Often I look to the three hours after everyone has gone to sleep as my own time. I recently discovered this concept has a name: Revenge bed time procrastination. The literal translation from the Chinese calls it “suffering through the night vengefully.”

Daphne Lee at the Greatist says revenge bedtime procrastination is “a type of compensation, a psychological strategy that allows people to redirect their frustrations and insecurities.”

An interesting idea but I’m still not getting enough sleep. I’m on a mini vacation this week so I am sleep training myself and taking naps to recoup.

There is a lot of work to do on many fronts and I realized that not getting enough sleep is the direct line to burnout city. If I am a crispy critter I’m prone to poor decision making and in my fitness work, that leads to injury.

As to the ice cream part, that is a different story. We often use food, and treats like ice cream to self soothe. It’s been a stressful year. If the pandemic weren’t bad enough, daily I hear news that dismays, terrifies, and immobilizes.

Things like Murder hornets. Overly aggressive rats. Swarms of flying ants. Deer and goats run amok.

I digress. The point is self care matters. A little ice cream won’t do you any harm. If that’s not your jam, maybe a bike ride, or a walk in the woods, really anything that will take out if the weirdness that represents 2020.

I read that self care is a privilege, and for some aspects of self care like a pedicure, or a massage, the lack of economic security can make self care of that sort seem impossible.

I’ve also seen suggestions that not reading the news or stepping away from an issue is also privilege, and yes, it can be.  However, burnout  is a risk and poor mental health as a result of overwhelm is nothing to joke about.

So have a nap and enjoy your treat. As for me, there is a bright red chair waiting for me so I can sit and watch the clouds go by. And I’m hoping later, after a walk, there will be pie.

Martha fit at 55 likes long walks on the beach with the wind at her back.

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