In horse sports we all get focused on our animals. All they really just want is to eat, socialize and roll in the dirt, but we ask then to work for us on a regular basis. So it makes sense that we care for them physically as well as emotionally. No horse "shrinks" here, but time to decompress, do something they seem to enjoy, a vacation basically. What about riders? Does anyone ever address the stress and even possibly burn-out that can happen to a competative athlete?
Recently, I was unlucky and in Florida's warm humid spring I contracted pneumonia. As a physician, I recognized and started treatment immediatly with powerful antibiotics which knocked out the fever and wracking cough quickly. It was then VERY tempting to go right on with all my activities as though I was fine. But my education tells me otherwise. Those powerful drugs work but at a drain on my system. If I keep taking energy and health out of the system and not restoring it I will only get into worse trouble down the road. I HATE taking time off to be sick, and heal. So many years of my life have been spent in such endeavors, but bodies take real prisoners and can find tough ways to make you slow down in the end.
When sick or injured, allow time to heal. Be considerate of the insult your body has had and make sure to eat well and rest physically and spiritually to get back to being your best you. This advice also holds true for stress of all types, such as travel, love, divorce, job loss or change and many others. Treat yourself at least as well as your mount and you may be amazed at the changes.