Though you may always be exactly where you need to be when you need to be there, there is a difference between being physically present and mentally present. Do you find that no matter what you're engaged in, you are constantly running through checklists and going over problems in your head? Do you have trouble focusing on what is in front of you because your brain is going a million miles a minute on another topic? If so, you may be taking on more than you can handle.
Do you find you're so focused on work and getting things done that you end up snapping unexpectedly at family and friends? It can seem easier to lash out at those we know will continue to love us than to accept the fact that we may have more on our plates than we can handle. If you notice you are consistently having to make apologies for moments when you act brashly, it may be time to take a step back and re-evaluate.
When we are stressed and/or overworked, often the first things to go are our commitments to sleeping and eating properly. Issues on the to-do list seem more important than personal care, and we can quickly fall into a pattern of not taking care of ourselves. Although this may seem like a perfectly acceptable short-term solution, lack of sleep and scattered eating will soon cause an unfortunate crash in your abilities.
Unfortunately, between constantly dealing with stressful situations and being unable to sleep and eat properly, your immune system begins to weaken. As soon as it isn't working at its best, your chances of falling ill greatly increase. If you notice you're getting sick more often or you have an ailment that is lasting longer than usual, there is a very good chance that you have been burning the candle at both ends for too long.
When you feel like there's never enough time to check off the work- and home-related tasks on your to-do list, chances are you aren't making room for "me time." If you notice you aren't giving yourself at least a half-hour to do something you enjoy, things need to change. It doesn't have to be anything huge. Just taking a chunk of time to lie in bed, read a book or enjoy a bubble bath needs to be part of your daily routine. Give yourself time to check in on your mental health — your body and mind will thank you for it!
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