Photo by Nicole Law
Rest is essential. Sometimes, you don’t need another challenge; you don’t need to hunt for the next best thing, and you don’t need to get find something fun to do. You need rest.
I learned this new and fascinating concept while talking to a life coach who specialized in career changes. A friend of a friend, we used our first complementary call to get to know each other. I griped about being bored at work, upset with management, and just feeling like I was never caught up, never effective or efficient enough. This went on for a half hour. She asked me what I thought I could gain from working with her and I said, “help me figure out my next move. I think I’m done with this career.”
Something I said clued her in and she circled back. “Tell me about your home life.” And I did. To my astonishment she said, “Here you are painting a picture that you are a workaholic who is constantly searching for the next challenge, and you neglect to say that you are the mother of a toddler, a wife, and you have a hectic schedule that leaves you no time for quiet. You don’t need a new career. You need rest.”
And the tears started flowing. I had never heard those words directed at me before. Not unless I was sick, which rarely happens. We continued to talk about things that made me feel rejuvenated—massages, baths, reading quietly, time away from mommy duty—then she gave me homework. Commit to adding rest to your life for two weeks. She gave me my to-do list. Get a massage. I booked it online while we were on the phone. Go have time to yourself. Read, no audio, a book quietly with candles or soft music playing. Take a bath. We scheduled our next call for two weeks after the first.
That day, I learned that rest is not a dirty word. Neither are peace, quiet, or stillness. To be a whole, happy person, you need to take time to recharge your batteries. Rest is self-care. Rest is self-love. Rest is essential. I’m going to pass along the message that Joy gave to me.
“Give yourself permission to rest.”
Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time. John Lubbock