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Spending Energy Part 1. Spoon Theory

Updated: Mar 17


A black and white illustration of a jar labelled 'energy' with a spoon in the top. On a chequered background

Our time, energy and attention are so important to us, so why are we so happy to simply waste them?


When I took a year off from my studio and work, I was told about the 'spoons theory' created by Christine Miserandino. This idea was told in terms of chronic fatigue and illness, I think it's applicable for everyone too.


On a good day, a person starts off with 12 spoons of energy. Each task throughout the day takes up 1 spoonful. Getting dressed, eating breakfast, washing up... For a person with fatigue and low energy, these spoons aren't replaced, they're simply used up for the day.


Keeping it in mind that once your spoons are used up, that's it. You can start to look at tasks in a very different light. What are the things you want to do, what are the things you need to do and what can you either leave behind or ask someone to help you with.


In terms of work and studio practice, what tasks can you prioritise and get done and what can you either delegate or leave behind.


When was the last time you stopped the busy work and had a closer look at what you're peddling along with? Have you found any processes, analogies or methods that remind you to reduce or change your work load?



If you have a friend who might enjoy this kind of discussion, feel free to share this with them or if you have any thoughts on this subject please do leave a comment or drop me an email. To keep up with the latest blog posts, join my monthly round up here.

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More interesting finds:

The Spoon Theory article by Christine Miserandino. Energy levels when you have a chronic illness or suffer from Fatigue.

Kate Spencer's Life With Soul podcast - more about the tin bucket analogy

Benefits Of Creating Slower blog by Elin Loow


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