No Rest for the Weary – Better Rethink that!

Finding pockets of rest in 4 main areas of your life


Well, the Lord said, "Let there be," and there was on the earth below and in the sky above, Well, then he knocked off work 'cause it was Friday night, Come Saturday morning, everything was just alright, sure enough…

From song Alrightokuhhuhamen by Rich Mullins



It’s one hectic world.  Technology is running over us.  Employers expect you to do the work of 3 people.  We put our kids in too many activities.  We attempt to have “it all” all at once.  When the heck do we rest? #overworked #underpaid #tiredmom


Renewal and rest are vitally important.  #renewal Like Rich Mullins wrote more than 20 years ago, even God did!  Without it, our bodies do not heal.  Without it, our minds can get muddled.  Without it, our emotions can get out of control.  Without it, we can even be dangerous!


How are you doing with rest?  I am not just talking just about the number of hours you sleep.  There is a difference between rest and sleep.  We need both. 


Sleep.org tells us that simply closing your eyes for a couple of minutes “can calm your mind, give at least some of your neurons a break…and let your muscles and organs relax. It can also reduce stress, improve your mood, and increase alertness, mental clarity, creativity, and motivation “.


When we can find periods of rest, we are more likely to find our days enjoyable, our minds clearer and our work more productive.  Napping is preferred, and if you can get your boss to allow this, go for it! #napsatwork But most of the time our best option is to take a couple of steps back and catch our breath.


There are a few things we know about poor rest.  According to “Healthy Sleep” by Harvard Medical School, study after study shows that poor rest leads a variety of serious health issues.  People tend to weigh more and suffer from depression.  It can even shorten your life span.

Study after study shows that poor rest leads a variety of serious health issues. 

On the public safety side, besides falling asleep at the wheel of your car, it can cause disasters.  According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, in partnership with WGBH Educational Foundation, “investigators have ruled that sleep deprivation was a significant factor in the 1979 nuclear accident at Three Mile Island, as well as the 1986 nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl.”   Nuclear meltdowns can happen, people!! #nuclearmeltdown #sleepstudy


Schedule a fruit break!

Don’t think you have time in the day to rest? Ask yourself these questions.

  • Do you take your lunch break?

  • Do you get up from your computer every so often? 

  • What do you listen to when you are in the car, especially after a tough day?

  • Do you ever just sit in silence and breath?


We have allowed this to happen, you know.  We have allowed others to direct our lives. #takecontrol This and the unseen but huge pressure we feel to “keep up” are both things we do not question.  I’m not telling you to quit your job or tell your boss to go shove it next time she asks for one more project from you.  What I am saying is that we CAN and SHOULD take more control over our schedules and what we put on them. #youareyourownceo


A caveat: I have insomnia issues.  There have been medical reasons for this.  So, restless nights can have a biological cause.  You need to address those.  But for most people, our lack of rest comes from stress and not giving ourselves any time to wind down and reflect. #reflect #embracesilence


We have listed for you a few things that have worked of others.  Find what works for you.  Be intentional about this.  Look for places to slow your pace and relieve those neurons.  No one wants to see you go nuclear! 



Restful ideas


The Car

  • Turn off radio in your car

  • Turn of talk-radio in your car

  • Aromatherapy

Work

  • Take your breaks at work

  • No work talk on your lunch hour #eatlunch

  • Change your position at your desk or get up and work the hall.  It’s recommended you do this every hour

  • If you are overloaded, have an honest conversation with your boss and team #honesty

At Home

  • Stick to a bed time for the kids that is earlier than yours and stop with the to do list a couple of hours before bed.  The dust will be there tomorrow. #sleephygiene

  • Have a family dinner time ritual

  • Don’t turn on your TV as soon as you get home

  • Delegate chores to your kids #choresforkids #learnbydoing

  • Take a hard look at all the activities your family is involved with

In Your Ear

  • The information we expose ourselves to daily impacts our thoughts, our stress levels, our view of lives.  Be thoughtful about what these things are.

  • Classical music – especially baroque – has been proven to have calming effect on your heart rate

  • Take news breaks. TMI (Too much information for the uninitiated) is everywhere!  It can over load us, make us feel powerless and gives us a skewed view of the world.

  • Take technology fasts – anything with a screen #mediafast

  • Try silence.  A time to pray, mediate or simply be.

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Valerie LK Martin

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