Happy September!! I hope you are all doing well! I took a much-needed summer break from my blog, and honestly from writing. But I am feeling refreshed and have a lot of creative ideas and musings floating around in my head; It feels good to be back! As we are all diving headfirst into fall, with hopeful anticipation of cozy nights filled with soup and apple pie, I wanted to remind us how important it is to rest. I shared in my last post, my body’s urgent plea for me to get some rest! So, as we head into fall, a season where it feels natural to slow down and pause, I wanted to share some of the ways in which I am trying to incorporate rest into my life and hoping that you can find some rest in your own!
- Do Nothing: One of things that I have been doing more of is nothing, specifically nothing outside. I find a bench in the park, and I just sit and take in the sights around me. The beauty of the cloudless sky. The sounds of the birds chirping, or people talking. The smell of fresh cut grass. I allow myself at least 15 minutes to sit outside once a week without having to rush or think or anticipate what is coming next. In these 15 minutes, I allow my mind and my body to rest. Nature has a truly restorative and calming impact on our nervous system, so if you find yourself feeling overwhelmed or stressed, I highly recommend going outside or if you can’t go outside, look out a window for a few minutes to calm your mind.
- Notice the glimmers: Glimmers are the small moments that we take for granted such as a smile from a stranger, that first sip of your morning coffee, or a text message from a loved one. We often find ourselves rushing from thing to thing never stopping to just notice life happening all around us. For me, I’ve been noticing glimmers in flowers. It’s almost like I’ve never seen flowers before, but I am amazed at how many types of beautiful flowers are in this city. And I allow myself to stop and take a picture, so I have these memories with me.
- Add touch: One of the ways in which I find rest is to get a massage, but here in NYC you’re looking at a minimum of $160 and honestly, I don’t always feel like leaving my apartment (I’m a homebody). I recently invested in a Shiatsu Neck and Back massager, and it is amazing! As someone who carries their stress in their shoulders which causes these muscles to be so tight that it’s uncomfortable. This at home massager has helped to loosen my muscles and allows me the opportunity to decompress after a long day hunched over my laptop. Another plus is that the massager was less than 50 dollars! I think we’ve been taught by capitalism that rest and self-care needs to be expensive, but it doesn’t.
- Give yourself grace: I have said this before and I will say this again, give yourself grace. Some weeks I have enough energy and the capacity to go to the supermarket, buy the groceries, and meal prep. Other weeks, I order out for every single dinner and some breakfasts. I was being very hard on myself for not cooking and not sticking to my diet, until I realized that I am human! And there will be good days and bad days. What’s important is that I’m still here to fight through the bad days until I get back to the good days.
- Figure out what kind of rest you need: I recently finished, Sacred Rest by Dr. Saundra Dalton Smith where she highlights the 7 different types of rest that we need: Physical, Mental, Emotional, Spiritual, Social, Sensory, and Creative. After reading her book, I realized that I need rest not only for my own well-being, but for also for my creativity. If I don’t take the time to rest, eat well, and allow myself the space to just be, I am unable to create. Rest and productivity go hand in hand, and not so that we can rest to be more productive or that we only deserve rest if we are productive, but that we will literally be at our least productive selves if we do not allow ourselves the opportunity to rest.
I hope that these tips inspire you to find ways to rest in your own life! Comment below with your favorite rest tips and I’ll make sure to incorporate them in a future post! Happy Resting!