I take my self-care days where I can get them. This month has been a little up and down in that department, but I’ve gotten better about making it a priority. I have some changes coming up in my schedule next month that I’m looking forward to. I usually try to keep my burnout or stressful times on the DL, but it’s been really challenging the last few months as I’ve worked to squeeze in 60+ hours of work each week plus continuing education. I’m in the last two months of my health coaching certification program through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and I am so happy to decided to take this journey. It sounds hokey, but it’s been absolutely transformative in my professional and personal life.
While IIN has been on my radar since long before I was an RD, it really wasn’t the right time for me until it suddenly was last summer. I’m glad I waited a little while to see more clearly what direction I wanted to move in. Aside from deepening my nutrition knowledge, it’s really helped me improve the way I work with people on behavior change in other areas of their life and help them heal themselves. Filling in the gaps in my business education has also been a game-changer. Dietitians really don’t get that in our training (maybe that will change in the future), so I’ve loved getting to soak that stuff up. Two months from now, I know I’ll be glad not to have to fit in homework, reading, exams, and call-in classes, but knowing the end of the program is near is motivating me to savor that educational space and resist the urge to rush through what’s left of my coursework.
Time is a funny thing. This time last year I was dating someone I initially thought was a good fit, but then it kind of just…fell in on itself like a sad little souffle. No big explosive thing, just one of those situations where you get along and they’re generally easy to be with, but eventually you realize you’re just different species and are never really going to truly connect. I blamed work (I often do) but as the weeks and months went on, I came to understand it had more to do with a nagging feeling within myself that I needed to strike out and spread my wings without worrying about hitting someone in the face with those wings. Or, you know, accidentally trampling over someone’s feelings with my clumsy sagittarius hooves.
Literally the same day we broke up, all these funny little signs started appearing that I’d made the right choice, and the positive changes I’d been so restless to see were immediate. I was writing about this a bit a few weeks ago—sometimes as a female of the species, it can be hard to say, “Hey, I need to be on my own and do my thing,” but it’s been time well spent. At times it’s been overwhelming but the big picture is positive, even on those days when I’m ugly-crying out of frustrating or waking up in a cold sweat in the middle of the night feeling anxious about something like money or tech stuff I can’t figure out.
My goal is that having more time during the Monday to Friday workweek and doing fewer weekends at the hospital will make it easier for met to actually slow down on the weekends and not fry my brain, but I’m not quite there yet.
A few weekends ago, I actually thought I had a full weekend off and was so pumped. I was going to clean and write and cook and do food prep, and then as I was clocking out at the hospital that Friday one of my colleagues said, “See you Sunday!”
“Yeah, you’re working.”
I checked the schedule on the wall. Yep, I was. Whoops. Good thing she’d said something, otherwise I wouldn’t have shown up.
Soooo I had to turn on my heel and prioritize all those weekend ambitions and figure out what to put off and what to focus on. The result? A restorative Saturday that involved yoga, a walk in the park, food prep, cleaning, and almost zero time in front of my computer. Because Wednesdays are the day I do the food diary thing, here’s what I ate on my Saturday of Simple Human Things:
Breakfast: This Wild Blueberry Smoothie—so refreshing on a spring day!
Lunch: Baked salmon over salad ; a PB & J sweet potato as my carb for the meal / “lunch dessert”
Snack: Plain Siggi’s yogurt with some ground flax and maple syrup (not pictured)
Dinner: A version of this Broccoli Rice Stir-Fry with eggs, avocado, and miso-tahini sauce
Bedtime Snack: 1/2 cup of cottage cheese with raspberry jam
Have you ever gotten your work schedule mixed up?
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