Thursday, February 3, 2011

Week from #%$*!

When I am tired and stressed, I make poor food choices, exercise less and begin an unhealthy cycle. A few weeks ago, I had a tough week. In my delirium I wondered what could be wrong with me. I easily forgot about the stressful events and experiences that changed my body rhythm, reeking havoc on my well-coordinated, scheduled and fine-tuned life.

Monday & Tuesday - Handling the challenges of the Video/EEG was stressful enough without looking forward to four hours of sleep on one of those pull-out chairs in the hospital.

Wednesday - Delirium set in and I attended a planning meeting with my co-facilitator for our leadership consultation on Saturday.

Thursday - I attended Ben's annual IEP meeting. IEP meetings are stressful even when they go smoothly, which this one did. However, the results from Ben's psychological evaluation were revealed in the meeting and it was a lot to take in. I will share in another post.

Then I met with the school PT and a medical equipment salesman to make final adjustments to Ben's equipment order.

Friday - Logan and Ben did not have school. Fun, fun, fun keeping everyone active and involved at home.

Saturday - My first paying leadership consulting job in three years was planned for this weekend.

It took me a week to recover. I think most of us have weeks like the one above - they may look differently with other issues, problems and stressers, but they take the same toll on our bodies and spirit. Here are some of the lessons I learned:

1. Do not underestimate the effects of emotional and physical stress on our bodies. It took me a long time to realize why I was feeling so exhausted. Sitting down and reviewing what I had been through helped me see that I had a rough week and needed rest.

2. Under-schedule your weeks and days when something big is already planned.

3. Just say "no" - you will be forgiven.

4. Plan for special healthy meals when you can anticipate a stressful week. Healthy take-out would have helped me eat better. I was eating lots of carbs and sugar to stay awake.

5. Ask for help. And then plan for even more help.

6. Plan recuperation time. I finally slept an entire night and then napped the next day. My neighbor treated me to a movie, wine and decadent chocolate at her house. Do not underestimate the power of pampering. I felt like a different person the next day.

What do you do to prepare for a stressful week? Or to recuperate from one?

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