I Stayed in Bed the Whole Day, and I’m Going to Stop Feeling Guilty About It

There are days when it hits you suddenly. When you go back to your room after a meal, sit down in front of your desk, and find yourself incapable of making your brain work. And so you lie on your bed doom-scrolling through your social media or watching random videos on YouTube or drifting in and out of shallow sleep, and the next thing you know the whole day has gone by.

It hits you suddenly and you can never seem to fight it. You could push back against the urge and stare at your laptop screen until the blue light sears your eyes, but then you’re misspelling things or forgetting what your boss just asked of you ten minutes ago and the onslaught of emails are becoming too much to sift through one by one.

Suddenly, it all becomes too much.


I’ve had days like this, when I’d be so productive with my time before my whole body just shuts down in the middle of the week. There’s no rhyme or reason to it; it just happens. I could take a jog around the house or eat a light snack to perk me up, but more often than not I’m incapacitated.

And the guilt comes soon after. Of course it does. When you spend the whole day lying on your bed when you’re supposed to be working to earn your keep, of course you’d think you’re lazy. Of course, you’d feel the pressure to make up for it the following day. Of course, you’d get angry at yourself and be filled with so much rage and despair as you think: “What’s wrong with me?”

I would punish myself during these bad days. I’d decide to sacrifice sleep or, worse, a weekend so I could finish my weekly quota. I’d quietly hurl insults at myself: “lazy,” “sluggish,” “ungrateful,” “good-for-nothing.” I would hate myself, then tell myself that I don’t deserve to rest, and so I’d slog away in the coming days to the point of burnout. And even then, I’ll push myself to the brink. Because of course I would. I brought this upon myself. This is what happens when you sleep in for a whole afternoon when you aren’t supposed to.


For a while, it stopped coming to me. The holiday season went by like a blur and I remember each day being jam-packed with events and deadlines that I didn’t have time to actually *stop functioning*.  It was tiring yet productive, the kind you’d be proud of yourself for.

Then it hit me today.

After lunch, I sat back down at my work desk and froze.

My body naturally gravitated to my bed and it stayed there, unmoving, for hours and hours.

I got up when the sun had fully set. But something was different. I felt different.

For some strange reason, I thought to myself: “Oh. So the day’s over. That’s that.”

That’s that.

No crippling guilt or the impending doom of having to work more the next day to make up for anything. No self-harming words scratching at the back of my skull. No anger. No sadness.

Just acceptance.


Maybe it’s because 2024 had just started and I’ve allowed myself leeway to get back into the groove of working every day again following a long holiday break, or maybe I just knew I didn’t have much work to begin with.

But I’d like to think that it was because I’ve learned that giving myself space to rest doesn’t automatically make me “lazy”—it’s just me listening to my body that’s telling me it needs this.

It’s me understanding that days like this will always, always happen—it happens to every one of us—and I shouldn’t beat myself up for them. Why should I hurt myself when pushing myself to the limit under the guise of ~spending my time efficiently~ might probably hurt me more? I’ve learned that rest is just as important to my physical and mental well-being. So why should I be angry at myself for keeping myself healthy, sane, and intact?

For once, I’ve made peace with the fact that my body will want to become idle and the proper response to it is to just be kind and listen. One afternoon of *nothingness* isn’t going to kill you. There will always be tomorrow, and another day, and another day. For now, there’s this, there’s you, and there’s silence.

I stayed in bed the whole afternoon today and all I could say was “Oh, okay.”

Because it really is okay.

Tomorrow, we’ll try again.

(ALSO READ: What It Feels Like to Feel Too Much and What to Do When You Do)

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