We don’t always have good days and that’s okay.
Last week I had mixed feelings about going back into lockdown.
I’d just started a new job working in fitness and I was galloping around incredibly excited to be there. I was gutted that for a short time the gyms would be closed, so I can’t coach in person. I was also incredibly relieved to still have the privilege to coach online.
I was also a little relieved and excited. I’ll be honest, I had a good time in the first lockdown, I learnt a little more about how to prioritise myself, what I needed and my health. I had a ball dancing around my garden and doing handstands.
So when I cycled home the night before lockdown 2.0 it almost felt like going home for Christmas holidays. This time I also have a barbell and weights to play with, compared to the first lockdown where I had my beloved backpack full of books.
The other difference was that the first time I had just quit my job to reach out on my own, start freelance work, start my own nutrition business and get into personal training. I wasn’t worried, I had just been handed the gift of time to take things slowly instead of being terrified of being out of work. I had time to decide what I wanted to do. For me.
Gradually work started to come in and I kept saying yes to things. Until recently, these were manageable and within my comfort zone. Until recently, I felt in control.
Now I’ve pushed myself out my comfort zone and I’m not going to lie. I’m terrified. But I am also excited.
Ever had that feeling when everything feels completely out of control but you also feel compelled to run into the eye of the storm because that’s where the things you want to do are?
My body has clearly decided for me that the amount I’m trying to juggle is too much and the moment of cycling home to a lockdown was the moment of relief that I needed to cut things out of my life. Cutting out things that don’t bring me joy or opportunities to learn.
As I’ve finally taken time to slow down in the last week, the shock of burnout is high. My plans to get back into lots of fun home workouts have totally fallen by the wayside. The desire to sit still and recover has been unbelievably high.
The reality of high functioning anxiety has kicked in. I am in a moment of continuous doubt over my actions, waking in the middle of the night adamant that I’m meant to be somewhere. Literally walking around my room to get dressed to go out at 1am.
I used to struggle with sleep paralysis when I was travelling, because there was so much change in my location that it would take until I went to sleep for my brain to try and catch up on where I was. In my dream I would be stranded in a street I’d never seen, trying to work out how to get back to my bed.
Right now I am back in those dreams. In my sleep I have a moment for my brain to catch up to my life. In my sleep I forget about holding it together, I am processing, I am scrambling.
I am writing this both to confirm to myself that it is okay to take this lockdown time to rest, to reduce and to prepare. I am a person that needs external accountability (I am working on this). I am also writing this so that if anyone else is feeling this way, it is okay, you are not alone, and you can talk about if you want to.
It helps me to write. I don’t like to talk about emotion unless it’s positive. As I sit and read about high functioning anxiety, I realised that it is a common trait to be hard to read or display emotion - me right now. I know that my brain is overthinking and running at hyper speed as it adjusts to the 1,265,982th change of 2020.
With time, I know it will improve. These are all lessons learnt in a tricky time and the main thing is that I am learning. There are no right or wrong answers or decisions, as long as you learn from them and choose the path that is right for you.
Now to watch many episodes of Grey's Anatomy, eat some homemade cookies and chill out for a couple of days to feel back in tip-top shape!