When it comes to monitoring energy, I’m probably quite lucky in that I do get certain signs when I’m hitting a limit*. A lot of people only have the post-exertional fatigue to go by (which might not hit for a day or two). When it comes to physical activities, my heartrate starts to go up a lot when have done too much. Good indicator that I need to take a break! If I ignore it, I also get heart palpitations which are nasty. So I try not to. With cognitive stuff, I know to stop when the brain-fog descends. I think that that’s actually a sign of having gone past my limit though, so I probably need to learn to stop before that, instead of boldly marching on to destruction.
Before Christmas, a wonderful friend of mine visited and insisted on cleaning my entire kitchen! God is good to me! But since then, we’ve accumulated a small pile of washing up that needs doing – so, today I’m trying to do the washing up! Yeah! My husband has been having to do pretty much everything else, and I feel really bad about not helping at all. Especially as he works full-time, ontop of all this.
My approach is as follows:
1. Fill sink with all dirty items within reach
2. Fill sink with hot soapy water
3. Leave until energy regained
4. Wipe/rinse all clean looking items and leave them to dry
5. Empty sink of water
6. Repeat steps 2-5 until no dirty items remain
This totally eliminates the need to scrub and to hold heavy things up for a long time, the two most vehement opponents in the battle of the washing-up. Enemy number 3 (prolonged exertion) is defeated by only having to do a few items at once. Enemy number 4 (standing up) can then be subdued via the use of a chair!
I’ll totally understand if you aren’t placing your bets on me winning this.
Edit (30/10/12): After many more months of experience, I have discovered I am doing this when I am well-past a limit, not reaching a limit. So, this blog post? Not great guidance. But perhaps, some insight!
Also, I lost this battle in the washing-up war. It is definitely not a do-able activity. However, future victories have been ensured via the “husband and dishwasher” method: get a dishwasher, get your husband to use it.