It’s not hard to stay busy but it is hard to rest, isn’t it? We know how to be busy and productive and there are lots of books and blogs written about boosting your productivity and performance. But on the flip-side, we need to really learn how to rest.
Resting doesn’t mean physically getting some sleep but we need to know how to rest mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually as well. Oftentimes, if we rest too long, that nagging guilty feeling springs up to nudge us to get going again. Or before you can fully rest from a project done, you get more notifications on your phone demanding you to respond to another matter.
Rest is hard to find and harder to even do. Therefore, to fully rest, you need to be intentional about it. There’s really no other way other than being adamant about giving yourself rest even for a part of your day. Otherwise, it will be something that is pushed to the side until we are forced to rest due to acute or chronic illnesses. So to minimise the likelihood of that happening, consider some of these ideas to make rest a part of our busy lives:
Take a long shower or bath.
One of the best ways to be with yourself is in the shower. If you are a mom, you know how a shower can be your sanctuary as the sound of water rushing down drowns out other noises outside. And a great perk is that you can’t take your phone in with you. I don’t think I’m alone when I say that I get the best ideas and inspiration in the shower when I’m just alone with the water! It’s where I came up with one of son’s names, business ideas, and even troubleshooting a few things lingering in my mind!
Go on a coffee date with yourself.
Doing errands outside? If you have some time, don’t rush home to be faced with more housework right away. Silent your phone, let yourself linger at a quiet coffee shop, sit and breathe in the fresh aroma. Key word: breathe.
It sounds counter-intuitive to what we think of as rest, but exercise is a great de-stressor. As you are challenging your body, your mind unplugs and is focused on each rep and each movement. Endorphins are released and the stress hormone cortisol drops giving you that feel-good feeling.
An hour a day or reading.
Give yourself an hour a day of just reading a book, any book or magazine you like to take your mind away from the everyday routine.
Wake up without an alarm.
Waking up to an alarm is a jarring way to start your morning. Schedule one morning where you can wake up naturally without setting your alarm. I promise you will feel a huge difference when you get up naturally feeling fully rested.
The art of being still.
If you pray, being still in prayer time is a great discipline. In addition to speaking to God, try being still and listening and waiting on Him. This is where your soul can find rest and restoration.
All this takes intention and commitment to yourself to give yourself the rest your body and mind needs. Putting rest to the side and ploughing on with a busy life can take its toll, so I hope you make a real plan to incorporate rest and help you to be a productive and healthy person in the long run.
What do you do for rest? Share in the comments below!
Featured Photo by Hernan Sanchez