If you’re anything like me, rest is a word that you’re not particularly fond of.
While sleep definitely sounds nice, there’s so much to do that you feel guilty for even considering it. You’re worried that if you stopped to rest, you won’t come back to it.
Or even worse, you’ll lose all of the progress that you’ve made.
You feel like you have so far to go that you just don’t have time to rest.
Boo – I feel you.
As someone who hates the idea of resting, I can’t even watch a movie without doing something else.
But I also realize that whether I like it or not, rest is essential to my recovery journey.
Like it or not, rest is essential to YOUR recovery journey.
Are you truly making progress?
Or are you just busy? I have absolutely always hated hearing this. I am someone who is chronically busy and I thrive in chaos, whether it’s referring to motherhood, business, working out. I hated hearing it.
I assumed that as long as I was moving, I was making progress. But once I took a step back, I actually recognized what it meant.
I saw the impact that the lack of rest was having on my life.
A lot of the time we stay busy as an excuse to not do something else.
If you find yourself realizing you have something important to get done but suddenly you’re cleaning the kitchen, you’re probably just busy.
If it feels like you’re just doing the Scooby Doo run on a treadmill – absolutely exhausted but getting no where – you’re just busy.
Recovery is an active daily choice that you have to make every single day.
However, that doesn’t mean you always have to go at 100 miles an hour. A big part of recovery is recognizing when you need to rest.
If you were in an abusive relationship, you probably learned that rest was dangerous. Because if you looked like you weren’t doing anything, you never knew how they were going to lash out. If you stop for a minute, you’d have to actually recognize what’s happening to you.
So you just kept going.
Not resting became your coping mechanism.
There’s zero judgement or shame in that.
But if we don’t actively take time to learn how to rest, we’re just re-traumatizing ourselves and keeping us from true healing.
Look over your life and recognize where you may have hit a wall with business. Where are you not making progress? That’s where you need to focus or burnout will take you out.
Before you come wat me with “It’s just mental stuff – it’s not like I’m actually tired,” pay attention.
You’re literally rewiring your brain by choosing healing. Would you expect to go to the gym and build a ton of muscle if you haven’t eaten? No! Because you won’t have the energy to do anything.
Your brain is the same way. It takes energy. And when the brain is tired, it pulls resources from other places to keep up with the healing. This means that you’re going to be emotionally and physically exhausted.
Your brain needs caloric energy (aka food) to function regularly, let alone when you’re actively healing.
So you may find yourself exhausted after a powerful journaling session.
Because your brain just used a ton of energy to focus and work through whatever you were doing.
If you don’t take time to rest, your brain isn’t going to be able to do what it needs to do in order to heal.
If you are not taking time to rest, you are actively tearing yourself down to a point where it’s going to do nothing but cause harm.
I understand how difficult this can be. I also feel the crushing guilt that sits on your head every time you sit down to breathe.
But here’s your challenge: start with 5 minutes.
No phone, no cleaning, no laundry. Wherever you can find that 5 minutes of quiet for yourself.
When you’re first starting out, that 5 minutes will feel like torture. You’re doing something completely new and your brain won’t like it. That’s ok. Do it anyway.
The five minutes are gonna pass and you’ll realize that the world didn’t stop and you didn’t die.
After a few days of doing five minutes, add another minute. Take some time to do something that you enjoy. Maybe it’s listening to a podcast that has nothing to do with business or personal development or learning.
Maybe take some time and play on the video game. Binge a few episodes of your favorite show on Netflix.
The more you do this, the easier it will become.
I know it’s hard right now and that’s ok. You may feel uncomfortable. That’s ok. Embrace it.
Keep going and don’t give up.
What’s your favorite way to rest? Tell me in the comments!