Decision Fatigue

I’ve been feeling a certain thing lately that I’ve been somewhat writing off as being stressed and overwhelmed. As just feeling as one does living in this modern society we try to be OK in. As one does when one is just trying to get by–to make it through the day without greedily thinking that asking for more than that is an option.

Past that, I was struggling to articulate all this. Especially in a way that doesn’t sound silly and small when I say it out loud. In a way that doesn’t sound like the normal adulting things that we are all expected to do. Yesterday, during a particularly stressful lunch outing, I was able to access more appropriate terminology after becoming near tears over a taco-related decision: decision fatigue.

I am SO utterly exhausted and burned out over making decisions. As you become more aware of what’s at stake, of what making the wrong decision means, a feeling of impossibility comes into play after a while. The need for decisions never ends. Each one has to be thoroughly understood, the consequences fully realized to the best of your abilities. This is a heavy load to carry every waking hour, and it seems to then cause an exhaustion that makes small decisions then larger than life. So now, I can’t even choose between tacos or fajitas without the world’s weight on my shoulders.

I have several more appointments and testing before I know for sure, but I’m very likely staring down the barrel of a third spine surgery–all within less than a year. By any standards, this is some heavy shit. I can’t help but think about how much weaker I am than when this started. I want to be as healthy as possible for this third and much more serious surgery. Between the two, are tacos or fajitas less likely to negatively impact this goal? The tacos represent the tip of an iceberg in this situation, and yet this is one of countless decisions that need to be made in a day.

While the vast underwater part of this iceberg is my spine, there are other icebergs. Sometimes, they are connected, and others are isolated islands. They are all very heavy on their own and crushing when together.

Part of the work I need to do to be a better, calmer, more content person is understanding how to withstand more weight and change this iceberg narrative entirely. I think success looks like not envisioning these icebergs at all–it’s damaging imagery. I want to take each of these decisions at face value without the icy baggage. I think recognizing all this is a big step in that direction.

See you tomorrow over breakfast.

February 2, 2024

A tiny project byJoni Trythall inspired by friends at Wiggle Work.