Thursday, January 7, 2010

Why I am Going to Bed Now

I often underestimate how much I am ruled by my body.  Like, I will find myself feeling really bad and not know why, and sometimes it takes a while for it to occur to me that I am feeling draggy because, physically, I am dragging.  I need to catch up on sleep, or go to the gym more (or less), or eat better.  Sometimes I notice almost an instantaneous change, that I feel substantially better - better physically, but also happier - after I take a nap, or sit down and rest for a little while, or have something to eat.  

This is also, I think, a consideration in terms of long-term happiness.  There have been times when I was really, by most definitions, not in a good place - when I was struggling to get through the last few months of my PhD, or when I had a boss who hated me and no local friends - but I was working out all the time and drinking a lot of coffee, so I actually felt pretty good.  Not that dosing myself with endorphins and caffeine is a solution to life, but it's something to keep in mind when I'm bored by my job or winter feels like it will last another eight months: having a happy (strong, rested) body helps in having a happy mind.

This shouldn't be suprising.  But a lot of people (including, often, me) seem to make it a habit - and a point of pride - to run themselves ragged.  Which is sometimes necessary or optimal for short periods, but it is a sad thing that we find it so hard to accept that our bodies need to be taken care of. 


  1. No sooner do I post this than I find an exciting three-chapter-long derivation and want to stay up half the night reading it.

  2. You know my opinions about this stuff. But yeah, it is nice if you and your body can have a loving-friends relationship, instead of a dominion-and-pushback relationship.