Say It Ain't So
My sad mantra these past few weeks has been "I'm so tired." I get up at 5:30am to go to boot camp. I shuttle my son to allergy shots across town at 7:30am. I dump the kids at school, but then sometimes live at school because I'm an indentured servant to the PTA. I rush to the grocery, to the post office. I rush around the house trying to maintain a minimum amount of order. I work on my coaching studying and meetings with my clients. And then it's 10:00AM. Man!! Life is busy. There is just no way around it. Ask someone - anyone - how they are doing and you won't ever get the response "great, I'm not very busy at all." And alongside being busy, many of us are tired, too. I get to 3pm and I can't believe I have 5+ more hours of living to do.
I'm tired. I don't have any other words for it. I say it over and over again to those who ask and will listen. I'm just - so - tired. And each day I wake up and I feel - you guessed it - tired. And when I crawl into bed I say it again - I'm so tired after today. And on it goes. I say it. I repeat it. I feel it. I believe it.
So which came first - being tired, or just the overwhelming belief that I am tired? Maybe I feel like I should be tired, given all that is going on, so I say it because it is clearly the best description. If I say I'm tired, I can excuse myself for not eating right or tossing food scraps to the family for dinner. I'm tired, what do you expect people? If I say I'm tired, I can justify just about anything because eventually when I'm not tired any longer, I can get back on track. Saying I'm tired is the best opt-out ever! Who can argue with me about it? Who can deny me my feelings of tiredness? Who would try?
But what is the truth? Am I tired? Or do I just keep saying I'm tired and willing it to be so? Is it possible that my repeated declarations of tiredness are leading to my feelings of being tired? And that my actions are tied to this false narrative that I have going, one that allows me to believe what I have been saying and confirming it with behaviors?
It's obviously time to flip the script on this one. If I can say I'm tired and then justify feeling tired, then maybe I should just say something else. It is that simple. Say something, feel something, do something. Fill in the blank with whatever feeling you want and it still applies. What we say affects how we feel and how we feel affects what we do. I think that is probably the only way to truly take responsibility for how our days go. After all, our words and our feelings are ours alone. No one else gets to write that script for us.
So yes. Busy lives can lead to feelings of tiredness. I won't deny that. But if I make an attempt to utilize words that are more empowering, maybe even more accurate, then my feelings about what I'm doing will naturally lead to a more empowering set of behaviors. "I am so busy living a full life" leads to feelings of satisfaction for handling the challenges that each day presents, which then leads to my desire to be the catalyst for further success as the day proceeds. A full, satisfying life lends itself to ending with a balanced meal. A tired, worn out life does not. I guess I'd better get up from this computer and start chopping those veggies.