My mental breakdown completely changed my perspective on what is truly important. For 2-3 months last year I barely had enough energy to do anything. Even having a conversation would wipe me out and send me to my room for a nap. During those months I learned how valuable my time was. I had to be picky about who I spent it with, because it was so limited.
After a few weeks, I realized something very significant. I was investing my energy and time into the people that really mattered in my life and only those people. I also became conscious how much time I wasted with the wrong people before my breakdown; and how detrimental that was to my well-being. I gave my time and energy away to people that weren’t in my life to build me up, to return friendship, or to give the same care and kindness that I had given to them.
I went through a massive social media/phone contact wipe out. I stopped giving my time and energy to the people, stories, situations, etc. that didn’t contribute something positive in my life. I realigned my perspective right then and there. I was no longer sad that my old life was gone. I was relieved that I was free.
The Spoon Theory
If you’ve never heard of the Spoon Theory, it’s a metaphor for the limited amount of energy a “sick” person has throughout any given day. The point of the story is that you have to decide which things/people are most important when you only have enough energy (or time) for a handful of them each day.
The truth is that you have a limited amount of spoons, energy, and time no matter if you are sick or not. It’s important to understand the value of your time, because after you give it away you can never get back. No more spoons for you. Time is the most valuable asset you possess, because it is the most finite. Who do you choose to spend it with? What do you spend your precious energy on?
Evaluate where you are putting your time and energy. Who should you give your time to? How much of your energy is your job worth? Are you getting out of your job what you are putting in? Are you getting out of your relationships what you are putting in? How many spoons is worth? What no longer serves your greater good?
You are only one person. You have only one life. It’s yours and no one else’s. You are under no obligation to put any of your time or energy into anything or anyone that you don’t decide deserves to have it. Treat yourself with respect. Treat your time and energy as the precious, valuable, finite thing that it is.
One Last Consideration
I have one last question for you to consider. If you only have 1 hour per week that you could do something or talk to someone, what would you do? Who would you talk to?