Tired All The Time?

by Frank

Tired Man

Photo by Simon Cataudo

My mind is so completely full of plans, visions, hopes and dreams that the very thought of all I have to do makes smoke come out of my ears. The vital bodily organ that is supposed to help me make rational decisions is overworked and exhausted. My brain, if it was a person, would be completely covered with sweat and bent forward aggressively gasping for air. I’m tired. Right along with my tired mind is the rest of the body which quickly follows suit.

Every morning when I open my eyes it literally feels like I have blinked instead of slept and arose right out of the bed to start a new day. Each move I make rather it be walking, speaking, writing or interacting with my family is so taxing that I feel like I need a vacation as soon as my day begins. I am tired when I wake up, tired when I lay down and it seems like the to do list is never ending and I couldn’t be happier.

What?!

I know that is what you are thinking. Let me explain.

A few years ago I was frustrated with my life and the situation that I was in. I couldn’t focus at work because I hated my job. My family felt more like a burden than a priority because of the demands that were required as a husband and a father. Purpose in my life was completely non existent. When I woke up every morning, during this period in my life, my main goal for the day was to find a way to quickly get back into bed and go back to sleep.

Optimism was a curse word in my vocabulary. To make matters worse I even had the nerve to blame everyone else for the circumstances in my life. I had just been fired. I was broke and my wife was providing for our family. This was the ultimate blow to my male psyche. Overall my goal at this stage in life was survival. I lived to sleep. Even with all that passion for resting, my tired eyes lacked the ability to dream.

INSOMNIA SAVED ME

One night in my desperate pursuit to do what I loved, sleep, I was tormented by the insomnia bug. I stared at the ceiling for 30 minutes, changed position, stared at the wall for 30 minutes, changed position, stared at the floor for 30 minutes,….you get the point, then finally out of frustration I got out of bed.  I didn’t know what to do and I had to do something because staring at the architecture of my home was profiting me little.

I did something I hadn’t done in years. I wrote. I grabbed my dust covered notebook from the night stand and let everything that was buried inside of me poor out onto the paper. I filled up an entire notebook and afterwards I felt great. I also slept like a baby that night. (That cliche makes no sense, a baby doesn’t hardly sleep at all. 🙂 ) I repeated that process for several days and realized that the more I did the better I felt. My dreams returned with vivid color, digitally mastered sound, and million dollar special effects.

THE SPARK

With everything we are required to do in our lives, it can become down right exhausting. To me it always seems like I am 10 steps behind where I am trying to get to. Even the days when I feel like I get a lot done 500 more items add themselves to the list of thing to do. How do you handle this natural stress of life? What can you do to not lose your mind in the chaos?

I’ll tell you.

Even through the midst of all the confusion and frustrations of the day, every task that I complete gets me one step closer to the dream. (In surround sound) I might not be making giant leaps but every step rather small or large is moving me in the right direction. And guess what? Every step counts. In a race the difference between first and second place is a millisecond of time. That small step matters.

So, when I go to bed exhausted I know I do it for a purpose. When an item gets added to the list I count it as an honor to be trusted with the task. If I have to feel tired the next morning at least I can be confident that I am getting things done. I dare you to change your perspective.

There is no reason to sleep if you don’t take the time to dream. Work for a reason and break the mundane routines of life.

That’s the true benefit of exhaustion.