Woe betide the gal who gets little sleep …

Irving Penn. Girl in Bed, 1949/1970

As you may have noticed from my recent blog post on politics – I’ve been in a ranting mood.  And while some might suggest that ranting is healthy (if done in a blog post as long as it isn’t slanderous or defamatory), it is a sure sign that I was on my way to a mini-meltdown of sorts.  And it hit this afternoon.  So, what have I learned as a result of my meltdown today?  Here’s my list:

1. Get proper sleep.
Surviving on three to six hours a night doesn’t cut it for me.  Oh yes siree, I’ve learned that lesson.  Tired me is grumpy me.  It’s also energy out-of-control me.  Apparently it’s also too intense for comfort me.  You know how when you’re tired, things that aren’t really that big a deal suddenly take on HUGE proportions and you react as if the world is ending, when really, it’s just … not?  Yeah, well, that’s where I went this afternoon – with a vengeance.  Moving on …

2. I have an amazing partner.
Anyone who can calmly sit through my teary feel-sorry-for-myself rant and not run away screaming gets huge brownie points from me.  And he did (sit calmly through it, that is) and he even made really sensible suggestions.  I’m a lucky girl, and I know it.

3. While it’s convenient to use the excuse that I’m an Aries redhead so prone to meltdowns, it just doesn’t cut the mustard at the end of the day.
Taking responsibility for my actions and myself is the first thing to address.  And while I didn’t fall back on the Aries/Redhead excuse too much – it still got mentioned.  And, while it may be partly true – I’m a grown up, not a four year old and I have the choice to take care of myself and those around me by not letting myself get into that kind of state in the first place.

4. Did I mention get more sleep?

5. Eat properly and exercise.
Not eating breakfast is a bad thing.  You’re literally running on empty and your poor brain struggles to keep up with everything you have to do.  Note to self: start eating breakfast again.  I’ve done it before, and I know it’s not that hard.  Also the whole mind/body thing is true and so exercise is always a good thing.  Note to self: use that exercise bike sitting in front of the filing cabinet in the flat to exercise rather than using it like some sort of unattractive industrial installation art.  And clothes rack.

6. Remember that it’s okay to say “no” sometimes.
Do I really need to do that person’s website at a reduced rate? No.  Do I really have to chat for half an hour to prospective neighbours when they’re viewing the flat next door during inspections?  No.  Do I really have to be on the phone for two hours during my working day on a fairly regular basis to various people just because they feel a need to pour out their heart and/or talk about the weather?  No.  Does it matter that people might think I’m not being nice all the time?  Not really.  My mother has a great saying – “Don’t worry about what other people think about you – 9 times out of 10 they’re not”.  Think about it.

7.  I’ve mentioned the sleep thing, right?

8. Take time out for me.
I’ve been spending a lot of time helping out other people recently, and while I’m glad I could help, I just haven’t had any “me” time to speak of.  Realisation: if I don’t take care of me, then I can’t truly take care of anyone else.  (My partner pointed that one out – did I mention he’s not only beautiful, but wise as well?)

9.  Take the pressure off myself.
It’s good to have deadlines.  It gives you a set point in time and space by which you need to have something completed.  Doing a web site works like this.  Designing a t-shirt does as well.  Life as a whole, however – doesn’t.  Just because I haven’t achieved everything I told myself I would by now, doesn’t mean that I’ve failed – it just means its taking a little longer than envisioned.  Also, stop cramming so much into the day.  Stern note to self: Read back over Point 6 – yes, that “no” thing again – it’s kinda important.

10. I have lots to be grateful for.
Despite somewhat freaking out today – I’m grateful that I tend to move on from those things fairly quickly.  A few hours later (plus some more sleep) and I’m feeling better.  Not necessarily ready to take on the world again, but better none the less.  I have fantastic friends and colleagues.  I have a truly beautiful partner.  I have a nice home.  I have a cute little fountain bubbling away next to me and a new fridge – that I bought myself.  I have nice artworks on the walls and good neighbours.  I have a fabulous mother (who’s coming over for dinner tomorrow night) and gorgeous nieces and nephew.  I have a warm flat and a newly painted bathroom.  I love my acting work and enjoy my graphic and t-shirt design work.  I’m going to have a book published in about two weeks.  I work for myself, so can do my own hours.  I’ve rediscovered my love of writing.  I can hear birds calling to the dawn outside the window in the dark.  I’m here to face another day.

There is lots to be grateful for.

But first, I need some more sleep …

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One thought on “Woe betide the gal who gets little sleep …

  1. You need to be evil and charge full price. Also no flat rates. Charge by the hour or people will want endless changes and tweaking.

    – JABZ, @tropicando

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