As we roll into August, I've experienced some lower energy days and am feeling drained by the heat and humidity out late summer. My sleep hasn't been its best and my fuse has been noticeably shorter than usual. I completely forgot about a personal appointment on my schedule last week despite the multiple calendar reminders on multiple devices!
Then this happened over the weekend...
and I knew I had reached my limit. (In case it isn't clear, this is the coffee I poured into my cereal bowl next to my sad coffee-less mug.)
Now this isn't a tragedy, but for me it's a clear sign.
A sign that some of my core needs required some attention, a sign that I could have picked up on earlier in the week but chose to "power" through.
Tuning into the signals our body and brain give us on a regular basis is a key piece of the Intuitive Eating process, but it's also a practice that we can apply to the rest of our life to help us more keenly notice and effectively respond to the messages we receive about our physical and emotional supply levels.
So what's your sign?
Not your astrological identity but your unique and personal "tells" that mean your homeostasis is out of whack?
Take five minutes to check in rather than look outside for external cues about what's happening. Think through, write down, share with your officemate...
1. What physical sensations let you know you need a reset: Do you get frequent headaches? Stomach aches? Do you have a shoulder pain that only seems to pipe up when you're feeling (di)stressed? Do you end the day with jaw pain or eye strain? Without jumping to the next step of fixing the problem, simply notice or recall the ways your body tries to clue you into what it needs.
2. What emotional responses are more present when your needs are not being adequately tended to: All I have to say is "hangry" is a thing. When you're running on fumes, do you tear up more frequently or find your frustration goes from zero to sixty quicker than usual? Pay attention to how your emotions play out when your wellness tank is full when you're reaching empty.
3. How do you relate to others when you are not receiving the care you need: My extroverted clients know something's up when they begin isolating themselves from their community and extroverted or not, consistently pulling away from our social supports can be a strong sign that our energy is low. Other ways this may show up include picking fights with friends and family or even over-relying on others for support.
And here's the thing: normally, if we take the time to notice what's going on inside, the "fixing" flows naturally. We don't have to worry or wonder what to do. Our needs will usually guide us in the right direction.
All we have to do is look and listen.