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  • Writer's pictureHeather Lee Angland

Can you give me a signier sign?!

Time. To. Slow. Down.

blonde girl smiling with glasses on
Have you become a shadow of your former self?

We're in the final month of 2022, and if you are like most people I have spoken to, you are flat out exhausted.

Not the, I need a nap kind of tired...

I'm talking the kind of exhaustion that makes you feel like your body is so heavy that it is going to take every last bit of effort to pick up your spoon, scoop a bit of ice cream, and then somehow get that spoon to your mouth. Yep.

But seriously, is this something new?

Most likely not.

This is the build up of the year (or years) and that feeling of everything you have been through (the good, the bad, and the ugly)... and knowing that it's not quite over.

Still looking for some signs?

Yeah, that was me too.

Due to my overachiever tendencies, I want to do it all... and when I feel that I can't do it all, well, that's when my overdrive really kicks in (and ignores every sign that comes up).

Now, don't act like you don't know what I'm talking about - I see you! You're the one saying, "I'll just push through this last ___."

I see you because that was me, until I just couldn't anymore. No matter how hard I tried, there was nothing left.

Side story here. My body shut down to the point that when I pulled out of our street to drive to work, I drove onto the wrong side of the road.

I've not lived in the USA for 20 years, but my body, mind and soul had reached their absolute stopping point and I somehow reverted back to how I drove 2 decades ago. This scared the s#%! out of me (and my partner), so I immediately saw my GP and was put on stress leave.

Lesson here: Don't be like me. Instead, be honest with yourself and ask if these signs are showing up in your life.

No rocket science here.

Just an honest list of different ways your mind, body and soul show up to give you signs that it is time to slow down.

  • headaches

  • dizziness

  • muscle weakness

  • chronic fatigue

  • difficulty sleeping (even when you are tired af)

  • slowed reflexes and responses

  • impaired judgment and decision-making

  • moody or change in emotional responses

  • change of appetite

  • blurry vision

  • change in short-term memory

  • lack of focus

  • change in motivation

  • lack of energy

  • different cravings

  • aches and pains

  • foggy head

  • increased use of numbing activities (social media, drinking, drugs, etc)

  • consistent sense of overwhelm

  • sense of loss

  • feeling of disconnection or withdrawal

The key here is to be honest. Are you feeling different? Have you seen some of these changes in yourself?

What now?

If you recognise it's time to slow down, then now it is time to find ways that you can do that.

I won't pretend this is easy as we have responsibilities; however, I do know that when we really want something, we can find a way to make it happen.

First step: done. You recognise change is needed.

Second step: speak with your loved one's, so they are aware of how you are feeling and can help to be a support. This could also involve speaking to your work, if it feels safe to share with your manager or HR.

Third step: make one small change today that will create some space for you.

My fav thing to do is jump on my Pilates reformer and get lost in the movement and the mind-body connection it creates.

If that's not your jam, how about going for a walk while listening to a podcast or some music that brings up some happy memories (David Gray's Babylon album is my go-to for this)!

Prioritise you. Find ways to bring health and happiness to your day.

If this resonated with you, I'd love to hear what steps you are taking to slow things down.

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