Rest is crucial. It is at the basis of feeling good emotionally and physically. Allowing ourselves to rest can be really difficult in our western culture where so much emphasis is on productivity, more, faster, better. Where being busy or exhausted is a badge of honour. Where we try to balance so many roles in life. Where we find ourselves in the middle of a global pandemic. For many of us, rest does not come easy.
I have a couple of questions to help you explore your relationship with rest. What rest can bring you, but also what can get in the way ( e.g. unconscious negative associations that we link to rest or difficult emotions that come up when we allow ourselves to rest).
Just ponder the following questions in your head or take out your journal or a piece of paper and write down what comes up for you.
🌱What positive and negative associations do you have with the word rest? Rest is… ( E.g. Rest is lazy, rest is weak, rest is selfish, rest is nurturing, rest is softness, rest is vitality,….)
🌱What difficult emotions come up for you when you allow yourself to rest more? (for me that is often guilt or fear)
🌱What does allowing yourself to rest ask of you?
🌱If you would give yourself permission to rest more, what would be different in your life?
🌱What would building in more rest this week look like for you?
David Whyte on rest
I will leave you with some beautiful lines from poet and writer David Whyte (from his book Consolations)
“To rest is to give up on the already exhausted will as the prime motivator of endeavor, with its endless outward need to reward itself through established goals. To rest is to give up on worrying and fretting and the sense that there is something wrong with the world unless we are there to put it right; to rest is to fall back literally or figuratively from outer targets and shift the goal not to an inner static bull’s eye, an imagined state of perfect stillness, but to an inner state of natural exchange.”
“Rested, we are ready for the world but not held hostage by it, rested we care again for the right things and the right people in the right way. In rest we reestablish the goals that make us more generous, more courageous, more of an invitation, someone we want to remember, and someone others would want to remember too. “
Wishing you all the rest you need!