So many people people I know and work with are just so tired so often and all tend to either take it for granted and try to ignore it or, on the other extreme, rail against the fatigue as inconvenient and troublesome.
What if your fatigue is trying to tell you something very important about what needs to happen in your life? In the context of the body and mind approach to health the fatigue (whether the bone-wary crash of Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome, the apathy of depression, or a general listlessness and not-going-anywhere tiredness) is not a nuisance but actually very likely a sign that something needs to shift. It is time….
Here are six reasons why fatigue may be manifesting in your life and please note that these are certainly not mutually exclusive and many may well be interlinked:
1) Your body just needs to rest.
Quite simply there are times when we will go through developmental spurts – where physical and emotional shifts and changes need to be integrated - and the body utilises all its energy to do this. Furthermore, when there is healing that needs to take place the body needs to rest. Sometimes we don’t know that there is imbalance or physiological issues that needs attention and we ignore the fatigue and push on. The fatigue is telling us it’s time check in, listen and heal.
2 ) You are denying your own power
I have come to see in many of the people with whom I work (myself included!) that when we are afraid of standing in our power we tend to limit ourselves, withdraw from our truth and cut ourselves off from the energy we could tap in to if we actually just listen to our truth and step into our power. Please note that here I equate fatigue to being cut off from energy as a lack of energy results in fatigue. Furthermore, when we allow our self-power to manifest fully we access the great energy that provides.
3) You are cutting yourself off from receiving
Energy is all around us all the time. Energy is available in the form of prana/lifeforce/chi (depending on your outlook) and we can access this energy through the breath, food and a general openness to receiving. It is essential to receive grounding energy from the earth to balance the positive ions in our bodies linked to stress and inflammation. We also gain energy from others around us with whom we interact (and lose it to some people too).
When there is a general fear of and inability to trust the world and others we cut ourselves off from receiving energy. There may be an extreme self-reliance (as protection) present as well. The result is generally an inability to be open to receiving the abundance of energy that is available around us and this can lead to depletion and fatigue. If we can be tuned in we can feel when we gain energy (it feels good) and when we lose energy (it feels bad!) and put measures in place to protect the self against the energy-depleting people/things and spend more time with the energy-givers.
4) You are giving too much
Many givers are so focussed on giving out energy that they do not focus on themselves and their own energy and wellbeing. Often the giving is an indirect attempt to give to the self – to give the care and love that may have been lacking in childhood for instance. When this is not conscious then we can give so much that we actually repeat the same pattern and neglect ourselves all over again. Even conscious givers and healers who are aware of the need for self-care can underestimate how quickly they can become depleted and how desperately important it is to replenish the self.
5) You are not allowing emotion to be expressed
Emotion is energy. Think of the pain and the physical experience that can be caused by emotion. Emotions need to be acknowleged and expressed so that the accompanying energy can be released. The energy of emotion can be very healing and positive e.g. the energy of anger can enable activity and movement to protect our needs and the energy of anxiety can assist us to shift something that is not working/is harmful. However, many people are afraid of emotions and therefore try to suppress them. The energy it takes to suppress emotion is huge and the cost of this is fatigue. In addition, when you block energy in the body it impacts on energy flow and wellbeing in general which also results in fatigue.
6) You are doing, doing, doing so you don’t have to “be”
Many of us are so busy doing that we forget to just be present. We are not designed to be doing all the time. Times of rest are crucial for recovery and balance. In addition, when we are always doing then there is less chance to receive energy from others, the earth, nourishing meals and long, deep breaths. The doing is very often related to a fear of being still and what might be encountered in that stillness. For many the fatigue becomes so great that they are forced to stop and face that which is being avoided. Rather offer yourself this opportunity in a gentle way versus having to face it head-on in a complete crash.
In all the above cases the best answer to overcome the fatigue is to rest and to nourish the self with food and breath. When we are gentle and compassionate with ourselves and provide a space for that fatigue, honouring it for the purpose it plays, the results can be very empowering. Often there is a fear that if we stop and rest we will never be able to get back up again. Yes, sometimes you actually may need to take quite a lot of down-time but I can promise that if you allow the rest when you get back up to face the world you will feel like a million bucks! If we don’t take that time we continue to live with our energy tanks half full, just surviving, and may well get to the point where the body just crashes and forces that rest anyway. If that happens I beg of you, listen and do it properly. Give yourself that gift of renewing your energy. You deserve to feel your best.