It's a long weekend here and I've been finding myself resting more than I usually do. I took a long nap on a Saturday, and a bath on Sunday morning and still have all day Monday.
Why do we feel guilt or shame when we rest? When people ask what we did over the weekend I know many times I've felt compelled to say something interesting. Maybe go out and socialize or adventure somewhere new. Since the pandemic quarantine, I have learned to enjoy being at my home and relish the simple pleasures. Maybe hanging out in my garden watching the birds and admiring the plants. Taking a midday nap is something I was never able to do with my commute and busy life before. Now it feels like such a treat.
Where does the guilt come from? Why do we feel like we can't stop or slow down? I think it may come from the messages we receive that we always need to be working and hustling and trying to get ahead. Studies say that Americans work more than several other countries. Our jobs and careers overshadow all other sides of our lives. Now there's a movement for people to start side hustles. I'm a big believer in the side hustle as a path to living your dream life, but we also need to remember to take a break and rest.
Why do we need breaks? Okay, there's all the health benefits to not burning yourself out, getting enough sleep, exercise, etc. I believe there's another reason that side hustlers really need to pay attention to (well anyone for that matter). Creativity thrives when we rest or play. When we listen to what our body needs and just go with the flow of our day we allow new ideas to come up, new inspiration, new opportunities that are easy to miss when we are hurrying along. Have you ever notice how you get ideas when you are taking a long shower or taking a walk? When we allow ourselves to just relax and flow we create space for our minds to wander.
I think rest is critical to this flow. You need to allow yourself time to relax and unplug. Just do what you feel you need to, be it for a whole day, or even a few hours. You might just get your next big idea, post-nap.
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