I mentioned the cat allergy in March’s things post, but I somehow didn’t realise that I was closer than I thought.
The problem is dust.
Cats are not the only thing I have allergic reactions to. I struggle with VOCs (which makes using any oil-based paints a risky proposition), and I don’t sleep well with dust around. Both cause massive congestion and drop my IQ about fifty points*.
VOCs are relatively easy to avoid, but dust accumulates silently over time, and I forget it’s an issue over the winter because dust reaction feels so much like a cold.
On top of this, I had been habitually running on about two hours less sleep a night than I need, and the time change in early March** made the mornings darker just when I needed light.
Things I’ve done to improve the situation:
- get a daylight lamp. I probably should have got one of these years ago. It has helped me wake up more completely in the morning and given me energy to approach real work first thing.
- go to sleep earlier. If I am getting up at five (and I am still trying to do this) then I need to be asleep around nine as a usual thing. Maybe I can shave half an hour, but ten is too late and eleven is going to just kill me the following day. I’ve been slacking on this the last week or so, but it helps me a lot.
- dust more regularly. Dusting is something that I’ve always had as a low priority. I’ve never enjoyed it: moving things around in order to just put them back again has always struck as more annoying than necessary. Still, if I want to continue to function, it’s something I need to do a lot more regularly. I’ve set up a regular reminder to do this task.
The weird thing is that while my mental processes have been swimming in treacle, my running has been stronger. Shamrock this year was great (and I have already signed up for 2020) and I’ve been consistently hitting 8:30 miles on challenging routes. There are injury concerns, but it’s working pretty well.
Still, better sleep will help there too.
Here’s to staying on top of things.
[*] y’know, approximately.
[**] ask me why I loathe the stupidity of the time change adjustments under the Bush Jr administration!