There for a Reason
November 7, 2021
Elizabeth Atkinson, Low Entropy Volunteer Writer
There is so much pressure to succeed and make use of every hour of the day – but at what cost?
Living as a young disabled person, knowing my limits has become a survival technique. With fibromyalgia, overexertion can cause flare-ups that can be detrimental and throw a wrench into future plans. It is not always easy to stay true to your limits. There can be a lot of pressure to physically keep up with your able-bodied friends and family. This can be something as simple as walking at a pace you are not comfortable with, just to keep up with your friends who don’t need to worry about conserving their energy on a short walk. Feeling safe emotionally by being able to voice these limits is key. The people around you will understand, and hopefully accommodate the limits you have set for yourself.
However, it is not just disabled people who need to know their limits. It seems more and more these days people are being praised for “the grind” and while I am a fan of hard work and a strong work ethic, working to the point of exhaustion is just not healthy. People seem to be running on empty, as if their check engine light is on but they aren’t taking the time to look under the hood and find the root of the problem.
Limits aren’t just physical. Limits are there for a reason, whether they are physical or emotional. Knowing your emotional limits is key for setting boundaries. Personally, I have had to set limits with my family about them talking to me about my weight. I have had to set that boundary with them as it was causing my mental health to deteriorate and causing a strain on an otherwise absolutely beautiful relationship. By setting this boundary, and knowing my limits with my family, I was able to preserve something amazing.
As previously mentioned, there can be a lot of pressure to forgo your limits in order to make life easier for the people around you. This, however, will not serve you in the long run as you become run-down. Emotionally setting limits and sticking to them is potentially even harder than setting and maintaining physical limits.
In my opinion, pushing your limits is always overrated because limits are there for a reason, and that reason is to protect you. Staying true to your limits is a good way to ensure a happier, less stressful and more energized future for yourself.
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