You know all that stuff I bang on about endlessly, regarding how you need to look after your body and brain? And about how, if you don't, they will eventually start to let you down?
Ignored it completely this week, didn't I? And guess what happened?
I suppose it began last Thursday. On the following day, I was due to attend The Business Networking Show at Wolverhampton Racecourse. It's the highlight of the year for any serious business networker, with lots of new contacts to be made, lots of opportunities to raise my profile and promote stroke-education and (crucially, in these social-media days), the chance to meet in person all those people with whom online relationships have been formed.
The build-up had been going on for weeks and on Thursday, I had to make sure that I had far too many business cards, my rubber brain (it's a prop for using when I speak, you really must see it.....), my other promotional stuff, an adequate supply of food and drink, that I got to bed early enough for a 5am alarm call....
The day itself went splendidly. I came away with lots of good contacts (including someone who runs a company doing disability-awareness training for businesses, who told me I was the only other 'obviously-disabled' person he had ever met while networking), I raised my profile, I got called 'inspirational' a few times and I met dozens of people to whom I could say "Oh, it's you!!"
But it was a tiring affair; I was up at 5am, JulieGreat Scott arrived at 6.30am to chauffeur me to the venue and it was pretty full-on from the time we arrived at 7.15am until we got home at 5.45pm. At which point, I probably should have slowed down. But Friday nights at Warrillow Towers are what they are and it was probably close to midnight before I went to bed. A nineteen-hour day, then. With loads of stress and adrenalin. Just what I tell people to avoid.
Saturday was OK and Sunday was fine until I started to feel a little off-colour in mid-evening. I went to bed at about 10.30pm and got rapidly worse. By 2am, I was in the bathroom hunting for cough medicine and spent the rest of the night in the spare bedroom.
I awoke on Monday morning to find social media full of TBNS visitors wondering: 'is anyone else suffering from man-flu this morning?' LOL......
I should have stayed in bed but we urgently needed to go into Birmingham in the afternoon so I battled through, with inevitable results. By 3pm, I was half-asleep; by 9pm, I was in bed (spare room again....).
After no sleep and a diet of medicine for the next 36 hours, I feel slightly better this morning (well enough to write this, anyway). I'd like to think I've learned my lesson and at least it's given me a 40-second pitch for my networking over the next few weeks.
As someone told me yesterday, sometimes a warrior has to lose a battle to win the war. Which is true. But I'd rather not be daft enough to put myself in that position in the first place, thanks......