Taking extra care, these days

electrical wires with flames
This is where I’m at, right about now

The whole self-care thing is teaching me a bunch of really valuable lessons. It’s biting me in the ass, to use a turn of phrase. And yes, the visual of a dog biting my left butt cheek is pretty much how I’m feeling, right now. That, and electrical wires overheating and bursting into flames. (see above)

I have to do a better job of managing my energy as well as my workload.

And I have to give myself more time to do things. I’ve been pushing the limits of my time management skills, and it’s clear I can use some help. I need to develop skills. Back in the day before I was formally assessed as #ActuallyAutistic, I could semi-comfortably ignore my energy limits and just force myself to go on autopilot.

Over an extended period — years, really… years and years — that builds up and fries my system. Like electrical wires that are overloaded… something’s gotta give.

And that something is usually myself.

So, I’ve got to do more proactive managing of my issues. I could conveniently ignore my limits before… and then wonder why in heaven’s name I was doing so poorly.

No more. Partly as a result of the official autism assessment, and just getting a bit older and more experience (and wiser, too, I can always hope), I’m just not able to brush all that off anymore and pretend it doesn’t matter.

Meltdowns suck.

I had one yesterday.

Before I had finished my day, and I still had to stay functional and able.

I pulled it together, but…

Not much fun.

So, let’s back up, shall we, and re-examine our habits and approach to resource management…

Yes. Let’s.

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5 thoughts on “Taking extra care, these days

  1. What I used to do when I was in school and working was that I would schedule things to take longer than they would. I would schedule classes and work for the appropriate duration (unless they generally ran over), but the work I had to do…that’s where I got more specific on my schedule. If I had to read 30 pages for homework, I would assume that I would have difficulty understanding every page. Having timed myself previously throughout my school age years, I recognized that particularly difficult (and highlighter heavy) pages would take about 5.5 minutes. So I would assume that all 30 pages would take 5.5 minutes. I would schedule appropriately. Since it comes out to 2.75 hours I would round up to 3 hours and block schedule that. Therefore, if I got really confused, I had the time to figure it out, but if it was just as hard as I figured it would be, I’d still have 15 minutes to decompress before starting the next thing. If it was easy reading, and I finished in 45 minutes, I would give myself that 15 minutes before moving the next thing up. Some days, I took as long as I was scheduled for everything with few breaks until it was done (my schedule always stopped 30 minutes before bed so I could decompress), or I’d finish everything and then maybe decide to do something (or part of something) from the next day. That allowed me to get ahead at least a little bit. Maybe that kind of scheduling can benefit you. Your schedule is probably not as specific as mine needed to be for school, but if you schedule set decompression breaks, that would absolutely help, and if you’re already do that, maybe add a few minutes to each one, or add another one. Taking care of you is the most important thing you can do.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. VisualVox

      What a great plan – I clearly need to start doing that, myself. I am way too optimistic about how long things will take. That needs to change. Thanks for writing! Great tips.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I’m glad I could help!
        I recommend always overestimating how long it will take. You can’t go wrong that way. Don’t be optimistic about how long it will take, overestimate, then be optimistic you can beat your allotted time frame.
        Good luck!

        Liked by 2 people

  2. This field was intentionally left blank

    Fantastic post 🙂 Your words resonated with me; I’ve been in a similar situation (in previous jobs, school, etc) and I find myself saying similar things now (referencing your quote: “I’ve been pushing the limits of my time management skills, and it’s clear I can use some help.”) <– SO much THIS! 🙂

    I’m going to have to consider marlapaige’s idea – looks very thoroughly thought-through! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. VisualVox

      Thank you! Yeah, I think there’s a lot we have in common — there are lots of us in this situation. It’s always great to hear from another person who can relate 🙂

      Like

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