Day 18: Healthy Deed of the Day - Leaving something unfinished in exchange for your health

I did it! I actually did it! I skipped the last two errands on my list this morning because I was running dangerously close to my nap time.  I didn't hyperventilate,  self-combust, or disintegrate into thin air. In fact, I handled it surprisingly well.

Wow. I didn't know I had it in me.

Leaving something unfinished is like nails on a chalkboard. It touches a nerve - sending a wave of  near repulsion through my body. It's probably because I visualize the "undoneness" just hanging out there, all messy and chaotic-like. It even looks bad!

But as I said in my last post, learning to let the "shoulds" fall by the wayside, and more importantly, being okay with it, is an important part of living well with a chronic illness.

I could actually make the argument that seizing the opportunity to go canoeing, like in Friday's post, was easier than forgoing these two errands. Who understands what I mean?

Here's my mindset:

The canoe trip could be justified. I could say it was a chance for a little physical activity, a way to clear my head, or even a tribute to my dad. He was a true outdoorsman, who was happiest near any body of water and a fishing rod in his hand. He would have jumped at the chance to go out on the water!

But forgoing the final two errands on my list? Knowing they are the ONLY two items keeping me from a completed to-do list? Come on! It would be so neat and tidy to finish them off. No one would know but me, but who else matters? I'm my own task-master. And I say I don't want incomplete business hanging over my head.

So what's the trick? How does one overcome the "doer" mentality? How do you let health and wellness win out over one's drive to accomplish?

You choose. And you choose wisely.

You make a pact with yourself that your health comes first. You tell yourself that, in this instance, a nap is the single-best way to stave off disease activity. It's the insurance for keeping your symptoms in check - your ticket out of Flareville. You remind yourself that allowing yourself rest and recovery is not failure, it's strategic. It's preemptive. It's pro-active energy-management.

And then you choose to uphold the pact.

This is not a new concept. I've written about "Just Saying No" many times before. And I just did it this morning. The fact that I'm still here to write about it tells you that Unfinished Business will not be our downfall! 


Anonymous said…
I loved this post!!!
So astute---something I definitely struggle with each day--letting go of checking off everything that to do list, and even harder-letting go of the obsessive thoughts that accompany the process--so basically just being at peace with it.

Sara Gorman said…
Maria - I'm so glad it resonated with you! Yes, finding peace within is really the key. We all have a different benchmark of what we should be able to accomplish, and being okay with whatever that looks like is the difference between driving ourselves crazy, and living well!thx for chiming in!

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