Mindful Working

What if it's not what we're doing but how we're doing it? I'm not saying that certain tasks aren't draining. But what can make them more draining is doing them at the expense of fueling ourselves.

This morning I experienced anxiety when I thought about sending out emails to promote my book about healthy relationships. I dreaded another day of putting in several hours of work and then feeling exhausted afterwards—and not even knowing if my efforts were going to bring any results.

That is when I noticed that my mind was racing and all I wanted to do was get on my laptop and start emailing more institutions and counselors. But I still hadn't had my morning almond butter sandwich. In fact, yesterday I ended up eating it in the afternoon, hours after I had intended to.

I've practiced mindfulness and breathing exercises on and off in my adult life. Today was another instance when I realized that I really need to crack down and try harder to slow down my mind. As difficult as it is, I need to approach this project, and really any project, with more self-compassion and patience. Pushing myself harder and demanding that I go faster gives me an impression that my results will come more swiftly. But that is an illusion. An illusion that I have to correct so that a demanding task doesn't become an overly draining one—when my lack of self-care inevitably catches up with me and several hours later my energy crashes and takes down my mood with it.

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