Sooo…. It’s fall, and the only way I know is by the insane amount of pumpkin coffee I’ve been drinking. It’s been a rainy mess these last few days, and I sure do miss the summer sunshine.
Last time I popped in, I discussed the importance of finding some sort of balance in this crazy thing we call life. On my own quest for balance, I realized I was missing one very important component, rest.
The thing about it though, is that I am 100% positive I am not alone here. In today’s world, we live to be busy. Heck most of the time it seems like a competition of who can fit the most into their day, and still make their Instagram look like they’ve got it all together.
The other day I was sitting in the car with a dear friend of mine after work. It was a shorter day, and I planned on using that extra time to go to the gym, clean my house, take Reva out for training, cook meals for the week, and catch up on emails all before bed. Sitting at a red light I was barely able to keep my eyes open (thankfully she was driving!), and I said
“You know, I’m really burnt out today, I think I’m just going to be lazy tonight.”
And then she said something that was so simple, and made such perfect sense, that it blew my mind.
“You know, that’s not being lazy, that’s what normal people call ‘resting’, and that’s OK to do.”
Say what? Resting?
You mean the one thing I preach the importance of all of the time and it’s the one thing I didn’t even realize I wasn’t giving to myself. I sleep plenty, yes, but I never allow myself time during the day to just “be”, for fear of not getting things done, or being “lazy”. This “must be busy” lifestyle we lead must allow for time to rest and recover though.
Getting adequate sleep does the body and mind wonders, so do we really need to rest during the daytime too?
In one short answer, YES!
Rest allows our bodies and minds to recover both physically and emotionally. Allowing adequate rest during the day reduces stress, regulates hormones, improves energy, and allows for more mental clarity and ability to concentrate. And overall just makes us happier, healthier humans! 🙂
Even though I know all of these goods things, I still stress out a little when I simply try to relax. So for me, this is going to be work to overcome the mental struggle, but I think my mind and hormones will thank me.
Here’s five things I am going to incorporate into my daily routine to help slow things down:
- Start every morning with 20 minutes of “me” time.
I don’t know about you, but I am typically checking emails and scrolling through Instagram before I even get out of bed. Embarrassing, yes, but you know you do it too! Before you check the phone or turn the TV on, set aside just twenty minutes to get your day started on the right foot. Whether that twenty minutes is used for meditation, exercise, stretching, or just listening to some uplifting music, giving yourself this time will allow you to center your mind before the hectic day. Every successful person I’ve talked to or heard being interviewed incorporates some type of relaxing morning routine to get themselves ready for the day!
2. Take a walk.
Even a ten minute walk around the neighborhood or through the parking lot on your lunch break can give you an extra moment to breathe and regroup from the day. Plus you get the added benefit of a little exercise and vitamin D! Walking allows you uninterrupted time to yourself and you can use it to enjoy the quietness or pop in a podcast or some tunes to listen to lift your spirits.
Photo Credit: Kyle Terry Photography
3. Tea Time.
We can all take a lesson from our friends across the way and start incorporating afternoon tea time into our days! What a simple, relaxing, and tasty way to take a break and slow things down. You can make tea anywhere and give yourself 10-15 minutes of uninterrupted quiet time while you sip on some steamy hot goodness.
4. Watch TV.
Yes I said it. I may be the only fitness professional EVER saying this, but that’s why you like me! Even when I sit and “watch” TV, I am writing, reading, or researching something else. My mind is still moving a hundred miles a minute. Allow yourself just one thirty- sixty minute show to sit down, watch, and be fully engaged in.
5. This is the most important- Give yourself permission to just be.
You don’t have to be constantly on the move, cooking, cleaning, scheduling, driving, studying, planning, or meeting friends. Give yourself permission to sleep in, watch tv, listen to music, blow off everything you had planned for the day, just because you can. It will make your heart and soul happier, I promise.
I hope you will all take on this challenge with me and allow yourself to “unadult” a little bit more through the day and fill it more with those things that make your heart happy. As always update me on how you are doing and send some more ways to relax my way!