I have recently moved from the "horrible" zone of the chart into the "bad" zone. I've been doing A LOT of things this month that I did not feel well enough to do because I had committed to them already and wanted to see my friends. In fact, I've done a lot of things THIS YEAR that I wasn't well enough to do. Including New Year's Eve. I was not feeling well enough to have my New Year's Eve party AT ALL, but I had already said I would, and I figured I'd feel sad if I spent New Year's Eve alone. I didn't *want* to cancel it, anymore than I'd want to cancel if I'd had the stomach flu, but in either case, I was not well enough to have it. I'm glad I had the party because I'm really glad I got to spend that time with my friends, but I do feel a gazillion times more drained now, the same way I would if I'd had a party while I was physically sick. And I have a sinking feeling that canceling because I had the stomach flu would have been way more okay than cancelling because of how bad I was feeling, even though the stomach flu would be preferable to me based on how bad I've felt this month.
I am not doing stuff I don't feel well enough to do anymore. I am not planning to leave my apartment anytime soon and I do not have a deadline as to when I will want to. I am in the "bad" zone of the chart right now, and it will be a long time before I feel like doing anything outside of that zone. My next social event that I'm definitely committed to is about two months away, and I am not committing to anything else in the meantime. (I did RSVP to a party that is about one month away, but it's a big enough party that I don't think anyone will be upset if I cancel at the last minute. I'm going to wait and see how I feel).
The other thing I'm not doing anymore of is risk-taking. I am getting hurt a lot lately with risky things I've done, and I'm not doing that anymore. I'm going to shut out the real world and live in my own cozy little world where nothing bad can find me. By risk-taking, I'm referring to doing things that I know have the potential to make me feel much worse emotionally. I went to a discussion event earlier this month that I was absolutely NOT feeling well enough to go to, and I knew based on the event description that there was a very high chance that I would feel a gazillion times worse afterwards. I chose to take this risk because I was feeling so bad that I just thought it was worth taking a chance on and that it might be worth going in order to see a friend and meet a new friend. But it was not worth going. Yes, I had a nice time visiting my friends, but the event itself was HORRIBLE for me and set me back so far and it was absolutely not worth it. It was my mistake, and I am not taking risks like this anymore. If something seems like it might be bad, I'm not gonna do it. End of discussion.
I am planning to do a lot of cuddling and talking about feelings with my friends, and do quiet, introverted things until I have an internal desire to leave the house and engage with the real world again. And I am going to treat emotional risks the way I treat physical safety risks. I am going to take them very seriously, not do things that I suspect will make me feel bad, and not hang around with anyone who pushes me to do things that hurt or demands any kind of explanation for why I'm not willing to do them. (That's not what happened this last time, but that is what happened most of the other times).
Here are the things I'm excited to do right now:
Read the whole Babysitters Club series - the regular books and all of the little sister books. I loved these when I was younger and still love them now, but for some reason I never finished the series.
Read The Enchanted Forest Chronicles - a fantasy series that my friend lent to me.
Read books by Madeline L-Engle - she wrote A Wrinkle in Time which is still one of my favorite books. I've only read a couple of her books but I really want to read more.
Do more coloring and drawing. My friend gave me this cool coloring and drawing book, which I'm really looking forward to starting.
Work on my validation book in a nice cozy setting.
Write more quizzes for my quiz book.
Work on other writing stuff like my blog and stories. Whatever comes to mind.
This list is subject to change if I change my mind. I'm planning to do what I want when I want to and not have any goals or plans.
And I want to make another thing very, very clear. My interest in introverted activities does NOT mean that I am less interested in fun or that I value my weekends less. This sounds silly, but it is what a lot of people assume - that extroverts are party people who place a high value on fun and introverts are more studious and conscientious and more likely to be studying on a Friday or Saturday night than extroverts are. I am a hedonist and having fun is absolutely at the top of my list, the activities that I like to do are not "lesser than" big group activities with a lot of stimulation. If they ask about overtime at work again, I will NOT NOT NOT be doing any more overtime than people who get drunk every weekend would do. My personal life is NOT going to become less important just because it's going to be non-social.
So it's gonna be a lot of warm fuzzy cuddling and talking about feelings with friends and doing calm, quiet, activities without a lot of stimulation. I don't have any idea if or when I will want to do bigger things again.