Part of how I am trying to pace myself to stay healthy is to limit my weekend activities to one big event, or one big goal and not worry about anything else but do supportive tasks to accomplishing the one thing. When I am able to do this, it works.
Two weeks ago, it was laundry. I have spoken before about the laundry problem. My life is better the more often I do it, but it is time consuming and takes a tremendous amount of energy. I go to a laundromat, so I need additional energy to be out in public with this, and relate to others (“may I use this basket?”) not to mention the physical work of managing what for me is at least 3 loads of clothes and linens. It raises my heart rate and seems to deflate my life-force. Total time: 2 – 3 hours, including sorting beforehand and putting away after. I had waited so long as my energy has been very low for the past three months, so I needed to make the rule for myself to get it done: the only thing I need to accomplish this weekend is laundry. Outside of doing laundry I was free to rest. And it worked.
Last week, I wanted to address my small kitchen, rendered all but unusable with so many dirty dishes. Again: the only thing I need to accomplish this weekend is to wash and put away dishes. I do this in 15 minute increments, as it must be all done by hand, and rest for at least as long as it takes the dishes to air-dry. I was able to complete my goal with two sessions Saturday and two Sunday. How good does it feel to have a burden lifted! And how much more do I then enjoy cooking.
This week my imperative was to at long last, put the Christmas ornaments and decorations in their boxes and store the boxes in the closet. I had already taken care of the tree, realizing that it would be easier to get the tree to the curb in time for local pickup if I did not worry about putting away the ornaments as I did so. That helped me then, and now I have had these lovely heirlooms sitting on my dining table, waiting patiently for the past two weeks. I have wanted to put them away. I have not had the mental focus and determination on work days or left on weekends when I have serviced other goals. But today I said: the only thing I need to accomplish today is to put the items thoughtfully into boxes, helpfully labeled, and return to the closet. I listened to interesting podcasts and had it done in the space of 2 hours. My heart rate was raised a bit putting the boxes in the closet, pst the heavy coats and beyond my easy reach, and I have just now realized the tree stand is still on the front porch waiting also to return to storage. Sigh. I can do this another time, my work for this day and weekend is done. Now I can enjoy the feeling of satisfaction.