I am exhausted. Not in the I am a bit sleepy sense, but in the if I close my eyes I am going to fall asleep on the train and up in Timbuktu. (Well not there ,it’s not in Denmark. Probably I’ll end up in Middelfart – yes this is a real place.) And it’s been this way all week.
Here now the clocks have changed, the first snow and frosts have come . The world around me is beginning its winter hibernation. Except, of course, the humans. Our lifestyles don’t allow for hibernation. Even when we crave it, it’s not part of our make up or in many cases our culture. Yet traditionally in the wheel of the year, this is the time for slowing down in our lives. A time to recuperate and re energise for the coming work in spring. That’s all very well, I hear you say, but I have deadlines, Christmas shopping and a hundred and one things I need to do. And all those things seem harder in the winter. Well my friends that is because you are fighting your natural needs.
Is there a way we can harmonise with our natural needs, recuperate and raise our energy and achieve everything we want to and need to do?
The great answer is yes we can! With a little effort and surrender to your body, you can create this possibility for yourself in 7 simple steps.
Accept and Surrender
Today we fight the winter energy. Which actually drains rather than energising us. If you want to balance recuperation with effective functionality then you need to first accept that your energy levels are low. This week my own to do list has been stripped down to a minimum. It has helped me so much. I have less I need to achieve leaving more time to re- energise. So cut out what is not immediately necessary and surrender to your bodies needs. Remind yourself it’s sometimes the wisest thing to do is to take the easy option. Don’t make a four course dinner when you can hardly lift your arms, have a night off and reheat a leftover or order in. It’s ok to not be perfect and do everything all the time.
Assess your energy levels
Get to know the ebb and flow of your personal energy. I don’t always have a lot of energy mid morning. Mr T usually has no energy around dinner time. nowing the curves in your energy pattern helps you plan your day to your personal rhythm. It’s just so much easier to flow with a natural rhythm rather than against it.
When energy is low then it seems so appealing to reach for the espresso or an energy drink. But these fake boosts of energy last only for a short while and come with a draining comedown experience. So before you reach for the coffee filter, ask yourself if this is really what your body needs. (That said dark chocolate does give an energy boost so sometimes something unhealthy in moderation helps too).
Water, sun and fresh air – Healthy Stimulants
Instead of the bad and often expensive simulants, healthy stimulants are available to the overly tired person. With the bonus of usually being free. Drink water and rehydrate yourself as often as possible. Eat healthy. The body needs fuel, good food to kick start it again. Get out in the sun and fresh air. If you don’t want to walk, take a blanket outside and lie in the sun for 10 mins. If winter weather is also getting you down I can recommend taking vitamin D (although please take the advice of a professional health practitioner.) Gentle exercise (or high energy exercise if you prefer it) produces dopamine into the body increasing the body’s capacity to function and your happiness levels. One of my favourite things to do is go for a swim and a sauna. A little exercise and a little pamper goes a long way.
Call in and give support
As I lay with my head on the breakfast table the wonderful Mr T asked me what help do you need? He had energy, I didn’t. That evening he was exhausted and asked me to sort out dinner. A fantastic energy exchange and took the pressure off both of us to individually do everything. It’s okay to ask for help. Humans were not designed to do everything alone. Try it it works well. Life so much easier when we help each other.
You’re tired. That’s ok. So be cosy with yourself. Wear clothes that make you feel warm and cosy. Light the candles when the kids have gone to bed and snuggle up with a duvet on the sofa. Make time for being cosy. In Denmark we have a word for it hygge. Make hygge time for you and energise yourself.
Having a good sleep cycle is the best thing in the world. But the secret is not about the amount of hours you sleep, it’s about the quality of sleep you have. Glen Rhodes has written a fantastic article about healthy sleep cycles and recommends you plan your sleeping cycles around 90 minutes. So for example sleeping from 22:00 – 6:30 gives you 6x 90 minute cycles. To understand more of this theory have a look at Glen Rhodes article http://www.glenrhodes.com/132/ .
And there are also Catnaps (now rebranded as the powernap). Many countries culturally include catnaps into the day. And why not? A short quality sleep gives you renewed energy during the day. If you can’t sleep during the day (I struggle myself) then take the catnap time to lie down and do nothing.
So if like me you are tired and exhausted right now, take time out to find a way you can re-energize during the coming week. A body that never gets a chance to rest makes you unproductive and unhappy. If you want an happy energised life then in today’s society you have to create that for yourself. So follow the 7 steps and re energise your life.
Have a wonderfully, cosy and relaxing weekend and coming week. Now it’s time for me to have a cat nap…….zzzzzzzzzzzz