Why do I talk about naps like other people talk about sex?
Here’s the story.
“I wish there was a way to exercise without it taking up so much damn time. I have so little time theses days.”
This is what I heard myself saying the other day.
Then the part of my brain that lights-up when I lie called a loud coughing bullshit. And then, as if I were dying, instead of my life flashing before my eyes, the many ways that I waste time scrolled through my mind like a tattle-tailing Pinterest board.
This is what I saw. All three seasons of Orange Is The New Black, the many videos of dogs falling a sleep rolled through my memory along with the videos of fainting goats and that cute coargie who jumps off the pier. There were some longer memories of messing around with coupon apps and a string of time spent checking out the wrinkles on my face and pondering Botox, then rejecting it, then pondering it again.
I have time.
Still, I do know that research says that the number ONE excuse for not exercising, eating right, getting enough sleep is lack of time.
But, it’s not true for me. It’s not lack of time that stops me from meeting my goals of exercise, diet, sleeping or writing another book. I have time. I waste time.
What I need is more energy.
I need to manage my energy.
I realized this was my thing and then I found out it was a thing-there’s an article on it here Decision Fatigue.
One of the things the article says is that when we use up all our energy and we still have decisions to make, we either do nothing or we get reckless. We either sit and waste time. Or we waste our time doing something reckless like shopping online or starting a grumpy Facebook fight about politics or vaccinations. Something that may not be worth your energy
HOW do I manage my energy now that I have the problem figured out?
I maximize my very best brain time and never ever use if for dog videos.
Then, I invent more maximized brain time in the day.
Here’s how I do it. Maybe you can do it too. I work best in the morning after a cup of coffee. I reserve that time for the things that I find the hardest to do. I write my books at this time, I make sure all of my classes are scheduled at that time, I do difficult emails at that time. Then as my energy drops I go on to the next tier of energy-needing work. Then, around 2PM, when the only thing I have the energy for is dog videos, I put my head down on my desk or go to my car and take a 20 minute nap. Then I have another cup of coffee and it’s a new simulated morning kick-ass time for working again.
This is how I have the energy for the stuff I want to do in my life. Isn’t life about doing what you have to do, doing what you enjoy, and feeling pretty well while you are doing it? I think so.
So, manage your energy not your time and see how that goes for you.
It’s 2PM, I’m going down for a nap, then later tonight just before bed, it’s NETFLIX. I deserve it.
Sweet Dreams XO
Brilliant! We make excuses for not doing what we need to be doing for our health. I am guilty…and I have to do more for my health because I live with lupus and it is a huge energy sucker. Ann, your blog is something purely selfish for me, and the kick in the butt I need to not make excuses.
Oh Ann, this is so me! I stayed up too late last night watching Orange is the New Black on Netflix! I feel a little overtired this morning and guilty. But I so deserved it after a hard day at work yesterday! Now I may need to take a nap to manage my energy…Thanks for the great article!
I think writing residencies need to have afternoon nap time built into the schedule.
Me, too, Ann.