April 7, 2022
|I was talking to Jake last night about rest and was telling him that I believe resting takes more discipline than working or being productive.|
Perhaps not everyone feels this way, but I find rest to be a skill that has taken me much longer to acquire than productivity. Resting is an art, and one that I am still working to master.
In our modern society, rest hasn’t been the recipient of much respect. I believe, for all of our best interest, that this must and will eventually shift.
As a still-recovering over-achiever, I have always had the ability that so many of us have—to just keep going, no matter what. I could always keep pushing through… until I would burn out or break down completely.
I once burned myself out so badly that I had to take over a year off from work. Why? Because I didn’t listen to myself, my body, or the people who cared about me. I was afraid if I stopped and took the break I needed, I would lose momentum and money, or even worse—I’d be lazy.
I was wrong.
I wish I could take that girl I used to be and wrap her in my arms and tell her she didn’t have to keep going. She was still worthy of love and every good thing in life, even if she just stopped for a little while. I wish I could tell her that she didn’t have to carry such a heavy burden herself. I wish I could tell her that she didn’t have to be afraid of what would happen if she just… stopped, for a little while, to take a rest before she walked herself into dangerous territory.
But like the tattoo on my side reads, I was an obstinate and headstrong girl. You couldn’t tell me anything. I believed I could, should, and would do it all—on my own—without breaking.
I was wrong.
I’ve broken myself many times, burned myself out to the core more than once… all because I didn’t think I deserved rest.
I was wrong.
Now I’m learning new ways of being and doing.
I recognize that I deserve my own care and consideration. I realize that even with all the work I’ve done on self-love, there’s still more for me to do. Not only am I enough and worthy of my own love, but I am also worthy of rest. It doesn’t make me lazy. Life is not meant to be spent in constant productivity. That would be unnatural. Even nature has winter where Mother Earth is allowed to rest.
So, I invite you, if this is something that resonates with you, to join me in giving yourself permission to rest and make it a priority when you feel you need it. It takes strength to give yourself that permission, as I’ve come to learn.
I finally recognize that I can be more consistently productive, happier, and useful in the Divine Plan if I check in with myself constantly and give myself what I sense that I need in the moment, whether it be rest, play, time in nature, a hug, fun, laughter, solitude, socialization, exercise, or something else.
Now, repeat after me: I am not lazy if I rest. I am wise.
PS. For a fabulous book on rest that I read a few years ago (but still managed to burn myself out afterwards because clearly I didn’t internalize enough of the warnings…), check out Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang. I highly recommend it, especially if you identify with the term workaholic. Xoxo!
“Your body can heal. You can be happy and joyful and live a stress-free life.”
A Creative Rebel’s Guide to Winning the Game of Life