Tuesday 8 March 2016

On The Frustration Of Mental Fatigue

I've always prided myself on having a sharp mind. I know a lot of words and I know how to use them. I grasp concepts quickly. I have a good memory and I can recall things easily. I can tell you three other things a familiar actor in whatever it is we're watching has been in. 

Or can I? 

One of the symptoms of my condition is mental fatigue. It's not a symptom I've really struggled with before and it's not one I'm able to accept. I forget words all the time: I KNOW what word I want, I can feel it sat there, just out of reach, and I can usually tell you what letter it starts with. I can almost always recover it if given ten minutes, but it never used to take ten minutes. 

I lose track of sentences half way through and it takes me a beat or three or ten to find the rest of it.  

I've already talked about my problems with reading in this earlier post and while I've managed to improve this slightly, it's not by much. 

I've also really been struggling with watching anything that actually requires attention. My mum and I spend a lot of time watching variations of Next Top Model and Say Yes to the Dress and lots of other similar take-your-brain-out shows which is fine with us, but it frustrates my boyfriend no end. The two of us recently finished a rewatch (not my first since last July...) of all the seasons of RuPaul's Drag Race and I was scouting around for our next easy watch when he burst out "please can we just watch something of substance?!"  I can't. I don't even have the energy to contemplate the concentration level this would require. I'm so mentally tired that I can't even stop in the right place when fast-forwarding ad breaks anymore. I've been building myself up by watching the latest Elementary episodes I've saved which are familiar yet new at the same time. 

The return of Arrow and The Flash, the start of Legends of Tomorrow came at a good time. My bf and I watch these together and I can cope with a format I know but with new episodes. I can cope with these which I know are mostly entertaining and not too cerebral. We're planning a Daredevil season 2 marathon when that comes onto Netflix and I really hope my anticipation for it, and my familiarity with it having seen season 1, means I'll be up to watching it. 

I've tried games on my phone that require logic, rational thinking and analytical skills to complete a level. Sometimes these help but most of the time I get frustrated at my inability to do them. And I was finding it easiest to play at night, which really wasn't helping my insomnia any. 

I'm hoping my return to work, which happened last week, will help sharpen my mind again. Working is tiring, physically and mentally at the moment, but it's also giving my brain a bit of a workout when honestly, I've let it go into hibernation the past 4 months while I concentrated on getting my body better. Hopefully I'm now ready to work on both! 

Do you suffer from mental fatigue? What is the worst element for you and what do you do to combat it? I need tips. 


Post a Comment