Life Can Be All Activity: The Importance of Rest Done Right
Life can be hectic, with worries, tasks, questions, and goals to work on. The breaks in our day are few, and often we find ourselves trying to rest by sitting in front of the TV or scrolling through the latest gossip. We think that by simply taking away what made us tired, we can rest. But the body and mind don’t always work that way, and we end up feeling more tired than before.
In this article, we will discuss the three approaches to rest that are based on how our body and mind work on a biological level. These are Acceptance, Change, and Surrender.
Tiredness and stress build up over time, creating an allostatic load which our minds carry like an ever-growing to-do list. With every new item added, we feel overwhelmed and unable to relax. In this state, we are unable to detach ourselves from the hubbub and get true rest.
One way of shifting our mind’s attention is through mindfulness, which helps us become aware of what is happening in the present moment. By becoming mindful, we detach ourselves from our to-do list and simply observe it. Meditation is a powerful tool that can put us in a mindful state, helping us achieve an awareness beyond our to-do list and bringing much-needed rest.
Studies have shown that 15 minutes of meditation can deliver the same amount of rest as an hour’s sleep. By accepting our reality and focusing on the present moment, we can achieve a restful reboot and release the tension and tiredness that come with it.
Our minds are great at focusing on something, but we struggle to focus on nothing. When we try to rest by doing nothing, our minds keep working on what was there before and fail to follow along. This is where change becomes important.
Winston Churchill once said, “Change is the master key.” Instead of taking away what tires us, we should redirect our focus to a different activity. By working out a different part of ourselves, we give the tired part much-needed rest and stay active in a fulfilling way.
If we have spent hours working on our computers, we could go for a jog. If we are tired of doing household chores, we could doodle outdoors. When we switch to a new activity that interests us, we create a new field of interest and call new cells into activity, giving ourselves much-needed relief, repose, and refreshment.
Sometimes, rest is all we need. We don’t want to detach ourselves or redirect our focus. We just want to pass out and let our body and mind recover. Fatigue is real, and chronic tiredness can lead to depression and other health problems.
In this state, surrendering to our needs is crucial. Surrendering doesn’t mean giving up, but rather bowing out for our greater good. We could take a nap, indulge in a bubble bath, drink hot cocoa and listen to music, or even have a beer and relax. We should take care of ourselves as if we were sick, doing what makes us feel good and helps us recover.
Whatever we need to get out of the red, we must do it now. We should surrender to our needs, shut down, and rest.
Rest is crucial to our well-being, and it’s important to do it right. By accepting our reality, changing our focus, or surrendering to our needs, we can achieve true rest and release the tension and tiredness that keep us from being our best selves.
Next time you feel overwhelmed, try these three approaches to rest and get the rest you need. By becoming more aware of what our body and mind need, we can thrive in life and achieve our goals with more energy and focus.