I am not, to be totally honest. Nobody is. It is hard to keep it together all the time, for ourselves, and our loved ones during the pandemic.
Most of us are feeling exhausted, numb and burned out from dealing with decision fatigue.
I recently listened to a podcast by Brené Brown where she interviewed two authors of a book called Burnout. The authors talked about how emotional exhaustion happens because we don’t let the neurobiology of emotion complete its full cycle.
What does that mean?
Every emotion has a beginning, a middle and an end. And when we don’t let the emotion complete the full cycle, we get stuck in a tunnel. This is when burn out, exhaustion and emotional numbing show up in our lives, our bodies and out relationships.
How can you let your emotions complete the full cycle?
1) Physical activity
This can be as simple as taking a walk outside, or doing your favorite stretch. Have you ever watched how easily and frequently cats and dogs stretch and shake it off? Our pets are onto something very wise.
This can be as simple as breathing in to a count of 4, holding your breath to a county of 4 and exhaling to a count of 4. Or, even letting out a long, loud sigh would do!
3) Positive Social Interaction
This can be as simple as smiling at someone, or being kind to a stranger, or saying “Have a nice day” to someone at the store.
Think of a really funny joke, or an amusing encounter and let yourself laugh about it. You may want to have someone else to share the laugh with!
Cuddle up with your pet. Give a hug to someone you are close to.
6) Creative Self Expression
Take whatever is inside of you and put it outside of you in a creative expression. Maybe you like to make collage. Maybe you like to knit, or make origami.
Even by imagining your way through a story, that is a form of self expression. Give yourself permission to daydream.
The picture above was taken in my office. Iowa is not by the beach, so I bought this picture of a beach to help me imagine being by the beach, next to a nice breeze. And, I put the puppets next to it to remind me of what it is like to simply be and play by the beach.
There is no right or wrong way to how you express yourself. So, go ahead and imagine your heart’s desires.
“Take your broken heart and make it into art,” as Carrie Fisher says.
What art do you give yourself permission to create?