It has been over a year since the start of this extended lockdown, and I have been living alone in this small space that I call home for quite some time now. Typically, when I feel tired from work or being out and about, taking a rest is my go-to solution, allowing me to recharge and prepare for the tasks and responsibilities awaiting me the following day. However, there are moments when everything feels more challenging than usual.
Mental exhaustion has become an all-too-familiar experience, particularly in the current times. Initially, I mistook it for mere tiredness, but it took me over three months to fully grasp that it was something more. I found myself unable to concentrate on my work or any activities that used to bring me joy. My passion for playing games vanished, and I constantly felt frustrated and angry in my interactions with others. To make matters worse, my recurring disorder, Trichotillomania, resurfaced sporadically, adding to the challenges I faced.
Despite the difficulty I face in focusing and the frequent forgetfulness of simple and important events, I am somewhat amazed that I can still manage essential tasks such as paying bills and taking care of my basic needs, even if it means having only one meal a day. It’s a reminder that even in challenging times, I can find the strength to take care of myself and handle some of life’s responsibilities.
After a year of battling mental exhaustion, I can say that I’m in a much better state now. It took time to understand the various factors that contributed to my exhaustion, but I’m gradually taking small steps to address them and make necessary changes. Every weekend, I engage in a sort of personal “KonMari” process, evaluating what I need to do and finding ways to simplify my life. Along the way, I’ve discovered a few strategies to prevent mental exhaustion, and I’m continuously exploring new approaches to maintain my well-being.
The feeling of exhaustion weighs on me throughout the day, becoming even heavier as the day progresses. Working from home, I’ve found solace in taking quick mental breaks, whether it’s sipping water, gazing out of my window, or simply standing up and stretching. As a reward for enduring the workday, I create a cozy atmosphere in my room by dimming the lights, wrapping myself in a blanket, hugging my plushie, and immersing myself in the soothing tunes of lo-fi music or enjoying some entertaining YouTube videos. These small moments of relaxation bring me comfort and help rejuvenate my mind.
My day or week might not end on a good note but relaxing before going to sleep helps me recharge the next day.
The accumulated stress I carry upon waking up has a profound impact on my overall well-being and mindset throughout the day. Recognizing the need for an outlet, I recently invested in a stationary bike, which has proven to be a valuable tool in my quest to destress. Engaging in an hour-long ride on the bike and then taking a refreshing cold shower afterward brings about a wonderful sense of relief and rejuvenation.
It’s amazing how such simple activities can have a profound effect on my mental and emotional state.
I used to hate cleaning because my room would quickly get dusty. Over the past six months, I neglected cleaning, and it resulted in a dusty living space. I started experiencing random sneezing and a runny nose. The mental exhaustion I felt made me easily angry, and seeing my filthy room would trigger my frustration.
However, after spending a full day cleaning, I feel much better. Cleaning not only transformed my physical environment but also provided a sense of relief and restored some calm to my mind. I don’t have to deep clean every day; that’s more of a monthly task. Instead, I prefer to do quick daily cleanups such as sweeping the floor, putting away dishes, and organizing my work or dining table. It helps maintain a tidy space without taking up too much time or effort.
These are some things I do when mentally exhausted. Recovery may be slow, but I’m hopeful to return to my usual activities.
P.S. I’m aware of the typos and incoherent sentences I’ve made here. My English-speaking and thinking process has been affected. Although I should fix it, I’ve decided not to for now. It’ll be interesting to see if I’ve made any progress when I look back after a year or so.