Micro Decision Fatigue

Sep 21, 2021
A gray elephant is in a room picking up a white chair with other tables and chairs around some are knocked over with lamps swinging above them

Do you find yourself saying "I don't know why I feel so tired these days?" In these challenging times, this is the number one complaint I am hearing from my patients in the acupuncture clinic (along with feeling anxious). There are SO MANY reasons you may be feeling unusually tired right now.

Something I have been thinking a lot about is what I call Fatigue due to Micro-Decisions.

Pre-COVID, you had lots of habits and routines that you didn't have to spend much time or energy thinking about. Putting gas in your car, going to the market, walking down the street. Since the arrival of COVID, for all of those activities of daily living, you have had to create new habits and new routines in order to stay safe.

Learning new skills and creating new routines is tiring. It takes effort and focus. Think about the challenge of creating a relatively simple new routine: changing where you put your keys when you get home. It can take days or weeks before the new habit is firmly embedded in your body, so you no longer have to think about it.

Of late, we are having to re-think and re-create so many new habits and routines, each of which demands focus and attention. Heck - I still manage to get out the door when taking my dogs on their daily walk without my mask on, and have to turn around and go get it. How many months into mask-wearing are we?!

When kids are going through growth spurts, they sleep more. So let yourself rest and sleep more, and give yourself a break, recognizing that you are literally using up more energy than typical just to do the basics of life.

These are not average times. Recalibrate your expectations of yourself (and of others) accordingly.

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