Some Ideas On How To Effectively Rest ~ IsleofAtlas
“I may work hard, but I will surely rest and party harder”
Some ideas on effective rest.
I almost burnt out last week.
I was doing rather well for myself. I was quite productive, pushing myself within the time I had allocated to work, and accomplishing the tasks I set for myself.
However, I hadn’t planned for rest – I could see no end in sight. I was so focussed on the need for constant progression I didn’t recognise how desperate my body was to destress. So, last Thursday, my body almost gave out on me.
Just a little life update but I’m fine now!
If anything, my little ‘brown-out’ experience from last week made it even more adamant I fulfil my duties in sharing the importance of HOW, and not just WHY, with you, my wonderful readers. Because, as good as it is to know the importance of rest, if you don’t know HOW to rest, you will most likely only rest when you push yourself over the limit.
If you’re like me, and you’re still trying to detach from a toxic entanglement with productivity, you will most likely panic on your rest days. But I’ve come to realise how important these days are to maintaining sustainable progress.
Know your boundaries
“Ever wondered why there were speed limits?”
If you schedule yourself days off to rest, respect those boundaries. Rest like your life depends on it. Because it does.
You may get further in … life … if you took fewer rest days, but you’d also crash a lot more. Like driving, you will get to your location quicker if you simply drove faster, but you’re also more likely to:
- Make more mistakes whilst driving
- Turn the journey into a terrible experience
- Crash (God forbid)
Ever wondered why there were speed limits?
There’s only so much the human mind can process at any one point in time. In times of stress, the brain restricts your ability to think clearly. Your focus isn’t on your environment, but on what’s in front of you. And this is what increases the likelihood of mistakes.
To reduce the risk to yourself, and others, precautions are put in place to make it easier for you to process your surroundings and take the stress off your mind and allow you to focus better. Thus, the
Sometimes you will need to slow down before you speed up.
Since last week, it’s a given that I will have two days to myself where I’m required to do absolutely nothing. And that’s the bare MINIMUM. Some days will be more productive than others and some days, not productive at all. Sometimes I need an impromptu day off – there doesn’t always need to be a justification for my need to rest.
If your body’s trying to tell you something, LISTEN. You’ll appreciate yourself for it in the future.
Also, ensure your rest boundaries are clear with those around you (if you don’t take calls after a certain time) if you don’t respond to messages straight away etc. Not everyone will like the fact that you’re not available to them 24/7 (emphasis on them), and I’m here to let you know that it’s their problem. Their response to your boundaries is not your responsibility.
Know your Why
“it’s a marathon, not a sprint.”
Whilst we’re here, it’s important to revisit the deeper reasons behind your decision to embark on a long journey. Why is “WHY’ so important? Here are two reasons:
- It reminds you of the long journey you’re on.
Whilst there’s a temptation to try and achieve your life goals in an extremely short period, the most impactful moments arise from the development of character and the small decisions made over your entire lifespan.
That can be draining.
Understanding the longevity of the mission helps put things into perspective.
It’s a rule of nature.
If you went to the gym every day of the week, your body wouldn’t have time to restructure itself for the next workout. Travelling over long distances requires refreshing rest periods to make it to the end successfully.
Committing to a lifelong vision ensures you always have something to look forward to. As I’ve said in other pieces, you’ll sooner get to your chosen destination (and beyond) if you identified with the version of yourself most capable of achieving what you have set out for yourself. Put yourself in that person’s shoes, then become that person in everything you do – even rest.
- It reminds you to work!
When I find myself demotivated, or when I become extremely comfortable with rest, I’ve reminded nothing in my imagination become a reality without my sacrifice.
Faith without works is dead, as the saying goes.
When I sit down for rest, I must remember why I get up, to get up.
It’s as simple as that.
Know your balance
“Rome wasn’t built in a day.”
The final key for understanding how to effectively rest comes with understanding yourself and your abilities. You will be the first person to know if anything changes and if those changes are significant enough for you to take some time off from the grind.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and some of your best assignments won’t be either.
As hard as it is to get a large task done in a day, it’s harder to commit to doing something across several days. And this is what I’ve come to understand self-discipline to be. Not the ability to raise in an instant on any given day but the ability to rise every day. And to be able to do so, I need to not overwork myself so much that I’m physically incapable of doing so.
Earlier I mentioned that you would have to be sensitive to your body to know when your body knows if you need to rest more on any given week. But only you have the discretion to know what your body can take.
Are you tired, or do you lack self-discipline?
Are you having a bad day or a bad moment?
Can you work now, or do you need to put in some overtime tomorrow?
I’ve decided to put in the work now.
And I may work hard, but I will surely rest and party harder.