Weekend Reading
July 17, 2022

Weekend Reading | The Full Helping

My therapist once told me that the moments when we need self-care the most are the moments in which we’re most likely to think we can’t make time for it.

Over the years, I’ve found her advice to be true. When I’m overwhelmed or stressed I always think it’ll make things better to keep my head down and try to get everything done as efficiently as possible.

Usually, the result is that I become overwhelmed, and because I’m a person who somaticizes stress quickly and intensely, I end up getting sick, or at least feeling sick. The worst case scenario is that I trigger a depressive spell.

On Friday, I started to realize how totally unprepared I am to be moving on Thursday, in spite of my best efforts to prepare myself. I guess that’s how moving always is.

I’d also just wrapped up a very intense and long day of work with clients. My brain told me that the right thing to do would be to keep working until I finished my notes.

Thankfully, my wise mind told me to go to a restorative yoga class with a very beloved teacher. She’s my first yoga teacher, actually, the person who introduced me to the practice about sixteen years ago.

So, I went to yoga. And when I came back, I felt so much clearer, calmer, and more able to focus than I had before. I could have chosen then to try to do more work, but I didn’t. I went to bed early instead.

I woke up the following morning and made a task list for the move, so that I can keep track of everything I’ve done (change my address with USPS, change internet providers, put a few more things on Craigslist for sale) and haven’t (switch gas and electric to the new unit, empty out furniture that’s not moving with me).

I wrapped up my notes and followed up with clients from the day before. And I did more yoga.

Not stopping to prioritize things like sleep, food, unstructured time (I’ve learned that “rest” includes both slumber and down time while awake) is so tempting in busy times. Sometimes it’s unavoidable.

But I’ve learned time and time again that it’s nearly always counterproductive. A little self-care goes a long way, and it’s often the only thing that strengthens and prepares us for what needs to get done.

Hope you can find a way to prioritize taking care of you this week. I’ll be doing it along with you, as best I can.

On that note, friends, I’m not even gonna pretend that I’ve been able to round up links for this week. I’ve been so much less consistent with these weekend reading posts this spring, I know, but it’s just a season.

These posts nurture me, too, and I can’t wait to start writing them from my new place.

Till then,

xo

 

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

    1 Comment
  1. Hi Gena. A big step for you with you move. May your move and new apartment exceed your expectations in all the best ways.

You might also like

Happy Sunday, everyone. Thank you so much for your comments on Jen’s green recovery story on Friday. I know that they’re meaningful to her, and I always appreciate the chance to hear your insights. Speaking of green recovery, it’s now officially National Eating Disorder Awareness Week. In honor of that, I’ve put together weekend reading links that include articles and essays about EDs. I hope you’ll find them interesting and informative, and if you think any of them might be worth sharing with family, friends, or…

I learned three weeks ago that September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. As a result, I’ve wanted to say something particularly meaningful about depression, but I just haven’t known what. I can’t pretend to understand anyone else’s experience of despair. Then, a couple weeks ago, I was emailing with a reader and friend who mentioned a line of poetry from Rebecca Hazelton, quoted as an epigraph in Rebecca Makkai’s The Great Believers, which I’m reading right now. “The world is a wonder,…

I’m sending this weekend reading out into the world from a hectic Sunday, which also happens to be an underslept Sunday. The combination of those two things means that I’m short on words, but last weekend’s post—which wasn’t short on words—did leave me with some follow up thoughts. Two of them aren’t my thoughts. They’re impressions and observations that readers were kind and good enough to share with me. Libby wrote, I don’t know that we are ever finished with anything. We have…

After one week off, it feels like a while since I’ve checked in for the weekend roundup! It’s good to be back. And I’m back at the very start of a week long break between DI rotations. I haven’t quite settled into it yet, but I have high hopes for some rest, some cooking, and some time with Ashley, who’s coming to visit later this week. A few weeks ago, I wrote about riding an ugly wave of body dysmorphia, my most intense…