Today’s world is so fast-paced, it’s easy to feel exhausted just trying to keep up. If we’re always in g0-go-go mode, the body is constantly using its “fight or flight” survival resources, and doesn’t have a chance to recharge. Too much time spent in this state can compromise your mental and physical health. It’s essential to take time to rest, so the deeper levels of your nervous system can heal as needed and replenish your energy reserves.
By rest, I’m not talking about a vacation spent running here and there to visit museums, tourist sites and soak up as much “fun” as possible. Are those experiences really relaxing anyway?
What I mean by rest includes both mental and physical aspects:
1) Take time for yourself. Stop, breathe and give yourself a moment of mental space every day. Take a walk on your break, pull yourself away from the computer, leave your desk, spend time writing in your journal, or simply close your bedroom door and allow yourself a moment of peace and solitude away from the chaos of your day.
2) Make time for sleep. There are so many distractions that keep us endlessly awake and overstimulated – technology, work, kids, etc. According to researchers from the National Sleep Foundation, “There is strong evidence that sufficient shortening or disturbance of the sleep process compromises mood, performance and alertness”, and may contribute to poor health. They note, “healthy adults have a basal sleep need of seven to eight hours every night,” however the exact amount of sleep may differ from person to person. Try this: just as you would schedule an appointment, schedule time for sleep. Then listen to your body – it will tell you if are getting enough rest.
Getting enough mental and physical rest helps you stay grounded and will provide you with the energy you need to successfully make it through your day. You’ll be surprised at what a difference it makes.