In my last post, I talked about being weary and not realizing it. I've been making rest a priority because resting also means that I am making myself my priority. So here are some ways you can do it too.
Making rest a priority is important. Scheduling restful moments and making sure you take time to rest and relax can help make resting easier. If it’s on the calendar, it’s more likely to happen. Putting rest on your to-do list reminds you of the importance of self-care and refreshing yourself.
It’s easy to think of rest as
But rest can be so much more! Rest is anything the restores your spirit and enthusiasm. Rest can be found in activities as well as being sedentary. Rest can include others or be solitary. All rest needs to in order to qualify as restful is a sense of joy and ease that restores your poured-out energies.
There are some clever ways to make rest a priority. Check these out.
Plan a spa day: Scheduling a spa day can be as easy as picking up the phone. Many spas offer packages that include multiple services for a reduced fee. The great thing about the spa is you can go alone or in a group. Either way, you can leave feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
Join a book club: Becoming a book club member is a great way to ensure you’ve got a new book to read. You can subscribe to an app for books or join a club with friends and choose your titles each month. Either way, you can look forward to some down time to read and escape, which will refresh your mind and help you unplug.
Schedule a monthly family day: Family time is precious. Kids grow so quickly and before you know it, the family schedule is packed with commitments and activities. Scheduling a monthly family day can help the whole family unplug, connect, and refresh. Disconnecting from the “real world” can help center and ground the whole family. Detoxing from social media, sharing a meal, and doing an activity together can refresh the mind, body, and spirit of each family member.
Don’t forget date night: Date night is a form of rest. Rest from responsibilities of parenting, rest for your relationship as you reconnect, and rest in general as you enjoy a great meal and a fun activity. Date night is more than getting away from the kids. It’s a restorative practice that makes relationships stronger. And whatever you do, don't negate your relationship with yourself, so take yourself out on a date night too!
Resting is much more than sleeping in. It is purposeful and meaningful activities that restore and renew. Get clever with your rest and make it a priority in your and your family’s lives.
Just the other day, I said to my best friend, "Why does it seem that I'm energized and tired at the same time?"
Being on the go is a normal state of being. People, whole families are busy! Between the expectations for work and home, there doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day. The larger the family, the larger the calendar and the more activities that fill up the day. Being busy doesn’t leave time for things like rest and play, and being on the go leaves little time to be in tune with your body. It’s entirely possible that you are weary and don’t even know it.
There are all sorts of weariness. Most common is physical fatigue, which is pretty noticeable each time you lay down to sleep. Being physically exhausted can feel normal and sometimes it is. Doing heavy physical labor, working out, or engaging in physically active sports can fatigue your body but there are ways you may be weary that aren’t at the top of your mind. Here are some uncommon ways that you might be weary and not know it.
Brain fog- Some degree of forgetfulness or scattered thinking is normal. Life is busy and some people have a better aptitude for detailed thinking but being weary affects your mind as well. If you have felt like it’s harder to remember important information or you’ve dropped the ball a time or two, it might mean that you are weary and need some rest.
Frequent illnesses- Catching the common cold is… well, common… but chronic low-grade illness can be an indicator of being weary. When we are too tired, our defenses are down and that makes us susceptible to frequent illness. If you can’t seem to heal from one bug before getting the next, it might mean that you need some rest and rejuvenation.
Stomach troubles- If you’ve been having a hard time with digestion, or seem to be triggered by foods, it could be due to being run down. Being on the go can lead to a poor diet, resulting in reactions to too much salt, fat, and preservatives. Additionally, having a nervous stomach can also be linked to anxiety and worries that come from an exhausted mind. If you are experiencing heartburn, stomach issues, or making too many trips to the rest room, exhaustion might be why.
Feeling tired might be such a common experience that you aren’t even aware you’re exhausted. Sure, you may be aware that you don’t feel great and lack enough energy, but are you sure why? Look for hidden reasons you may be tired so you can get a handle on the situation and make important changes.
My mom commented to me that I do so much and I said, "I'm not doing that much" and she said it's because I'm so used to being on the go that I don't realize how much I'm actually doing. I'm willing to bet that the same applies to you, so take note and pay attention to all that you're doing and how you are feeling, and rest your weary self.
“It takes courage to say yes to rest and play in a culture where exhaustion is seen as a status symbol” -Brene Brown
Here I am with the blog post for April. I didn't get around to posting another blog during last month which was more of an announcement about me only posting a blog once per month moving forward. Just in case I didn't mention the main reason for that, it is because I need to practice more of what I preach - Make Yourself Your Priority. One of the ways I'm doing that is making time for rest, relaxation and rejuvenation. With that said, let's talk about rest.
Our bodies are designed to rest. There is a natural rhythm of waking and sleeping that triggers our bodies into resting and rejuvenating. Most people don’t deny themselves time to sleep, but many aren’t getting enough sleep or proper sleep for that matter.
Being physically tired is a definite sign that we need to rest, but there are many ways that we can become tired. While sleep is a common form of rest, there are also different sorts of rest that help restore energy. The problem is, we live in a culture that doesn’t make rest a priority. Many people are so tired, that they can't function at their best, but they don’t believe there is anything they can do about it.
These days people are expected to work like they don’t have families and spend time with their family like they don’t have to work. It’s pretty much impossible to be all things to all people and not become utterly exhausted - but we try anyway.
Here are some facts: #1- If you don’t stand up for your right to rest, no one will. #2 - Making rest a priority in a busy world must start with you; and fact #3 - Those around you must learn to accept and accommodate your healthy boundaries.
Rest Can Feel Like an Indulgence
Since we live in a world that glorifies being busy, it’s hard to imagine resting as being responsible. Taking time off, doing nothing in particular, having no plans, or intentionally making plans to unplug and refresh seems indulgent. That’s a sad commentary on our culture. Recovering from exhaustion or preventing it altogether is nothing to feel guilty about!
Yet we do feel guilty. I recently revealed to one of my best friends that I would no longer be working 10-12 hour days and would begin working only 5-10 hours per week. My friend is a busy mother, psychologist, life coach, professor, and wife, so I felt not only guilty, but ridiculous for having the audacity to state such a thing, let alone do it. However, I am also a busy mother, psychologist, life coach, et cetera, et cetera. I know that I alone am responsible for my health, and resting is necessary to facilitate good health and a happy life, which makes it a priority.
Making rest a priority in a world that diminishes its benefits can feel like going against the grain. You’ve got to stand up for yourself and your family and integrate rest into your routine despite the normalcy to be busy. Setting boundaries and limits can help. Learning to incorporate rest into your routine will help keep your mind, body, and spirit from becoming weary. Encouraging others to rest and restore - as well as prevent exhaustion - will help ensure they are functioning at their best, too.
Failure to rest can lead to illness, injury, or worse - none of which improves quality of life. Make rest a part of your routine regardless of how it’s perceived so you can be sure to have the stamina, enthusiasm, and brainpower to live your best life.
Be audacious and make the time to rest!