Dealing with Fatigue

Screen Shot 2013-11-26 at 9.34.20 AMI’m still recovering from two months of travel. I came back from my last trip very worn out and fighting a chest cold that just won’t let go.

The past couple of weeks… I’ve just been tired. Normally, a day off will do for recovery. But this has been different. Each day I get up and mash the gas peddle of what I want to do… and there’s simply no vroom there.

The simple reality is that I pushed so hard from late-July until late-November that a couple nights off and sleeping in once or twice just isn’t doing it.

I’ve had to deal with the reality of fatigue. The only thing that has really helped has been rest.

  • Sleeping in a little each day. (I normally sleep 6 hours, I’ve forced myself to do more like 8 hours.)
  • Working a half or 3/4 day instead of my normal 10-14 hours. (No #teamhustle)
  • Laying around watching TV or hanging with the kids or reading a book or playing a video game. (When I’d normally be working.)
  • Letting stuff go. (I have impulses to do stuff or ideas I want to act on all the time. I’ve had to let that go.)

Overcoming Fear

One part of this, the unspoken part, has been the underlying fear that the energy that I so depend on just won’t come back. When I think back to all that’s been accomplished in 2013 a lot of it has to do with my ability to hit the turbo button at 11 PM and power through. For long periods of time I really felt like I worked 3/4 of the day and was actual energized by that.

Simply not having that as an option right now is scary. I need that ability in the not-so-distant future.

The trick, for me, is pushing past the fear and relying on the need for rest in faith that it’ll come back.

Resting, right now, is the most productive thing I can do. Which feels totally counterproductive to me.

The Sabbath is about Faith

When I think about resting for a couple weeks, working half time and trying to get my feet under me again, I’m amazed by this instruction about the Sabbath year in Exodus.

For six years you are to sow your fields and harvest the crops, but during the seventh year let the land lie unplowed and unused. Then the poor among your people may get food from it, and the wild animals may eat what is left. Do the same with your vineyard and your olive grove.

Exodus 23:10-11

If I were a sustanence farmer when Moses passed down that law this might have been my response.

Wait. God. What did you say? How am I supposed to feed my family if I don’t work the land at all for an entire year? It’s one thing to say I’m supposed to feed my family for 7 days on 6 days work, but to say I have to make 7 years worth of income in 6 years just so I can not work the fields… well, that’s just downright– faith. Oh. I get it. You’re trying to prove a point, God.

Yep.” Said God.

By Adam McLane

Kristen and Adam live in the San Diego neighborhood of Rolando with their three children.

2 comments

  1. This is the logic behind those very lucky pastors and academics that get to take Sabbaticals- obviously there is a faith and belief that the person will be better for it. Enjoy the deep breaths, and look forward to the creative energy it might inspire!

  2. Adam- I was going to say I’ll pray for your turbo button but then I reread your post and I’m changing my response to say I’m praying you keep the sabbath. In the midst of doing and creating amazing things remember that God is still on the throne.

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