Where is your anger coming from? Is everyone mean? Or are we just sleepy, thirsty, or hungry? I recently had a session with a couple that wanted to work on communication in their marriage. They were overworked, exhausted, and said they wanted strategies to better understand each other and more effectively communicate. They felt disconnected and wanted to become a stronger team.
They’d had about five sessions previously, and on this particular day I started to notice some subtle changes. Their tone of voice was softer while they chatted in the waiting room sipping coffee. Their body language was more open and receptive to each other. When they walked back into my office they had smiles on their faces. Something had shifted. After a couple of minutes catching up on their life since their last session, I asked, “How are you two doing? You both seem to be smiling more.” They thought for a moment, looked at each other, looked at me and said, “Honestly…I think we’ve been sleeping more.”
Sleep! Hallelujah! Precious, Precious, Sleep!
As a therapist, I spend so much time focusing on communication, getting in touch with feelings, empathy…(blah, blah, blah) that I forgot about the basics. The foundation to everything!
“Nothing seems crazy when you’re used to it.” – Sarah Silverman
Multitasking, side hustling, entrepreneuring, parenting, food prepping . . .when it comes to all the things that we do in a given week, the list can go on and on. It can be so easy to get lost in the “doing” of things that we can lose sight of “being.” Or rather, lose sight of the basic things, like rest, water, and food that we need.
The other morning, I had started my day answering emails and looking at my phone (not something I would recommend), and before I knew it – it was 11:00 am. I got sucked down a rabbit hole of emails, texts, and social media before I had finished my morning coffee. As I began to pull myself out of my phone-fog, I went to slice a piece of bread and – GASP – the bread was solid as a rock!
I just bought this! How could this be?!!! This was supposed to be gluten-free, save the rainforest, SUPER BREAD! My husband. David, saw me struggling and asked, “Is that bread still good?”
“What?” I replied.
“Is the BREAD. STILL. GOOD?” He continued.
“Uh, YES! I just bought it!” I had lost my mind.
How could he be so mean? I thought.
With his hands raised in peace, he said, “Okay,” and slowly backed out of the kitchen. Then, from another room he asked, “Is it possible you’re hungry?”
This reminder couldn’t have come at a better time. The days are shorter, it’s darker when we wake up, and the sun goes down by 5:30pm. Businesses are finishing their year, and oh yes, THE HOLIDAYS are right around the corner.
With so much to do and seemingly less time to do it in, remember that we are no good to anyone if our tank is empty. After my little “bread incident,” I made a promise to myself (and to my husband) to let myself sleep in a little if I need to, to actually eat lunch, as opposed to having lunch meetings/working lunches/”just answering emails while I eat my salad,” and to drink more water in a day than coffee.
What promise can you make to yourself to honor rest, and nourishment in your life? Maybe it’s adding fruit to your water so you enjoy drinking it more? Maybe it’s meditating before going to bed instead of watching TV?
Get creative, and let someone else in your life know your plan!