Welcome to Mindset Monday!
Rest is not a reward, it is a requirement, it is necessary. Have you noticed that there seems to be a stigma around allowing ourselves to rest? That it is considered selfish and even unproductive? Many of us have come to believe that if we are not ‘doing something’ we are being lazy. Therefore, we must be doing something that checks off the boxes of our to-do lists, whether this has to do with school, work, and everything else (and interestingly enough nothing to do with taking care of ourselves). We simply need to put this kind or thinking to bed…permanently!
Making time for rest is a critical component for keeping ourselves healthy, both physically and mentally. You simply shouldn’t feel guilty about it. It is important to let your mind and body relax. You deserve the level of peace and calm that can result from not worrying about something or another during the course of the day everyday. I know sometimes we can feel like we cannot or should not really rest until our tasks are completed; however, we know that with this practice things can become hectic and our level of performance slips as a result of us having too much on our plate to attend to. This even happens without us being immediately aware and for some of us not aware at all.
Shall I encourage you to take a few minutes, allow your mind time to reset and then return to the tasks/responsibilities at hand. This will help you to feel more motivated and therefore enable you to accomplish our tasks much better than before.
Rest can look different for each of us; for some sleeping, deliberate quiet time or just laying around (chilling or watching a movie) would constitute rest. For others, rest may be a long bath/soak, getting a massage or taking a quiet stroll.
According to Dr. Lawrence Epstein, medical director of Sleep Health Centers in Brighton, Mass. and an instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, sleep directly affects our ability to perform. Furthermore, studies have shown that “adequate sleep is essential to feeling awake and alert, maintaining good health and working at peak performance” Additionally, Epstein said that after 14 days of sleeping for 6 hours or less per night, students felt as badly and performed as poorly as someone who had not slept for forty-eight hours.
For those of us who find it challenging to take a break when feeling overwhelmed (maybe because you enjoy working so much), did you know studies prove that getting adequate amount of rest will actually improve your performance?
Whatever rest looks like to you, make a deliberate effort to prioritise that. Be reminded that rest is not a reward it is a requirement. No matter how many responsibilities, papers, projects or other tasks you have now, it is essential to let your body rest. I encourage you to make every effort to ensure that you are giving yourself the opportunity to rest (both body and mind). You deserve it.