Why do we do this to ourselves?

So, I woke early this morning with every part of my body aching and throbbing with pain. No matter how much I tried to get back to sleep, I couldn’t.┬áIn the end I got up and had a hot bath which soothed my muscles enough to get a little bit more sleep.

I’m pretty sure that this is a result of me doing too much over the past week and next week is just as busy (if not more so).

So why do we always try and fit too much into our lives?

I know that if I’m going to get better and build up my ability to do activities in a healthy way with chronic fatigue and chronic pain is to pace myself and cut back on how much I do in one day. And, compared to before I got sick, I am doing much MUCH less.

Before all this I was working full time, studying part time, exercising 3x a week (minimum) and spending a reasonable amount of time with my family and friends. Now I spend most days at home, only going out for medical appointments and occasionally visiting family or doing something with our friends. I do only 5 to 10 minutes of yoga a day and one short walk (I’m up to 6 minutes at the moment). I need to rest at least 2.5 hours a day and even then I feel as if I haven’t slept 99% of the time!

I know that with time I’ll get better at pacing and at saying “No” to those invitations I really shouldn’t be accepting but I guess at this stage I still want to believe that I can do everything I want to and that the consequences will be worth it (even though deep down I know that’s not true.

Do you still struggle with pacing yourself and saying no to those activities you really want to do but know you shouldn’t?

What techniques or tools do you have to help you with this?