My candle burns at both ends
It will not last the night;
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends –
It gives a lovely light.
— Edna St. Vincent Millay
It’s been brought to my attention that I’m overextending myself schedule-wise. And unfortunately, it was brought to my attention by my chronic fatigue.
Aka, I was pretty weary for the last 10ish days.
During the last two week of August I ended up scheduling so many things that I only had one rest day each week. (The first week of September wouldn’t have been much better, but I did the prudent thing and skipped a MeetUp event.)
In the past, two rest days has been best. But I honestly didn’t think it would be an issue, since three of the days were just Future State Trooper Guy (FSTG) or Pirate Party Guy (PPG) coming over here for two to three hours.
And they only came over after I’d had three to four hours after work to decompress with dinner, the cat and some TV. So I figured it couldn’t really be all that draining.
What did me in
Here’s what three of the last four weeks looked like (counting from Mondays):
Week 1: Therapy & FSTG, PPG, going to a singles event to wingwoman for a friend, trivia, PPG, comedy show with a friend, collapse
Week 2: FSTG, trivia, PPG, massage & trivia, beauty appointment, PPG, showing some people cool downtown bars, collapse even more.
Week 3: FSTG, trivia, PPG, [skipped happy hour event], Star Wars-themed burslesque show,* PPG, pool party 4 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., really really collapse
And of course adulting had to be sprinkled in and around these things.
This past week, FSTG had to cancel and PPG was only available once. So I had three rest days and think I’m mostly caught up energy-wise. But something still has to be done.
* The Empire Strips Back. It was fantastic. If it comes to your area, go see it. Tickets aren’t cheap (I paid $66.48 after fees), but it’s worth splurging a bit. The balcony was more in the $45 (with fees) range, if you need to spend a little less.
The obvious choice
The solution is pretty obvious — schedule fewer things each week — but’s that not as easy for me as it sounds.
As an extrovert,* I feel better when I’m around people. More than two to three days a week spent at home alone can put me into a bit of a funk.
Besides, I have a lot of cool people in my life, who are also interested in checking out the many fun events/shows/bars Phoenix has to offer. How can I just stay home alone?
Also, I want to spend a little — a little — more time on OKCupid to see if I can find a dating situation that’s a bit more substantive. But I currently don’t have any free days for a first date.
With PPG/FSTG three days a week, holding my MeetUp group trivia event once a week, and there usually being a fun party/event I want to see my friends at (or see with my friends), my five non-rest days are booked.
Granted, with pool party season waning, the number of social events may wane some. Even so, I’ll still want have time to see my friends.
So far the only idea I’ve come up with is to find a guy who either likes trivia or who enjoys the same types of parties/events I do. Then we could multitask: do the event, come back home for some quality time.
* I used to think I was an introvert, but it turned out I was just a severely depressed extrovert.
Of course, besides actual scheduling, there are some ways I can help get my body used to a more active schedule.
Sometimes when I get home from trivia or after PPG/FSTG leaves, I decide to watch a little more TV before bed. Sometimes it’s fine and I’m just staying up to watch one 40-minute episode.
But other times I lose track of the time and suddenly it’s 11 p.m. (or later).
So I think I need to not watch any TV after the guys leave (if they leave past 9 p.m.) and definitely none after trivia. But just to be careful — because I can also lose track of time with games on my phone — I’ve set a 9:30 p.m. alarm.
With nighttime routines and such, this means I should get to bed around 10 on weeknights — 10:30 at the latest.
Maybe a more rigid sleep schedule will help my energy.
As most of us know, working out does actually give you more energy overall. Of course, first you have to have the energy to work out, so that’s tricky.
It does help now that my doctor raised my Adderall dosage, which I’m now taking the usual twice a day. (I did just once a day for a bit to get my body a bit acclimated to, well, speed coursing through its veins.)
So if I can get back to a normal sleep schedule (and schedule myself carefully), I’m hoping I’ll find have the energy for a workout amid everything else.
Still, I may become a friend’s gym buddy. Medicare Part D plans usually include entrance to most gyms around you. So I can go to Planet Fitness rather than my preferred gym for a bit.
I figure that if I don’t just treat my workout like an appointment but actually have an appointment with someone, it could be easier to get back in the groove.
Also, my Halloween outfit this year is going to be Jessica Rabbit, so I’m starting to feel motivated to try to be a bit more health- and workout-minded.
All in all
This issue mostly boils down to my having too many cool people in my life, and living in a city where there are so many cool/interesting shows/events/bars.
And I absolutely acknowledge that this is basically the First World Problem of First World Problems.* Aka a pretty great dilemma to have. I’m really lucky to have found such a great social network.
But the “problem” is still causing issues for me physically. So I can’t just classify it as a ridiculous worry and move on.
Clearly, I need to take better care of myself. Which means being more regimented in my overall schedule, my sleep schedule and my fitness schedule.
* Maybe even the First World Problem version of the First World Problems sector of overall First World Problems.
Anyone else been burning the candle at both ends lately? Hopefully for fun things.