If I have learned anything in the past five years, it is the value of rest. We always joke and say that I am a very productive person. I find it difficult to let myself be still, quiet, and to fully rest. But what I have found is that if I were to never stop, I would eventually hit a wall and actually be less productive. When I take time to put my to-do list aside, I become inspired, motivated, and rejuvenated to not only pick up the busyness of life again, but rather take it on from a new angle and continue on the journey God has planned for my life and do good works.
There is an immense stillness and peace in nature. I have found it often to be where I feel closest to God. Many times, we find ourselves hustling past the beauty of nature and not thinking much of all that it has to offer. Whether I am alone and using it as prayer time with God or walking with a friend, I have found it to be one of the best ways to clear my mind and take a deep, refreshing breath.
Looking at the details and focusing on all your different senses, as crazy as it sounds, gives you a feeling of peace and allows your thoughts to come and go more freely. I feel rested simply by being aware of the fresh air and open skies, the medley of smells, the beauty of the tall trees, and hearing the little birds chirp. It seems to always leave me in amazement that by spending a few minutes out in nature my thoughts and stresses clear. Inspiration floods my mind once again and new energy and excitement are renewed.
Quality Time with Family and Friends
Long conversations, games, family time, walks, laughter… it doesn’t matter what we are doing as long as we are doing it together. These simple treasured moments fill my love bank and boost my mood.
When I have time off for vacation, I naturally try and fill it. I try and squeeze in all the things I have been wanting to do for a while. But it is just as important to allow myself to physically rest. Napping and sleeping have so many powerful benefits for your body. So, when I have the time to have more sleep, I always try and take it.
Reading to Restore Your Mind
I haven’t always enjoyed reading. I used to only read when I had too. Until someone explained to me how books are similar to the food you eat. I used to only read junk food books, if you will. They were entertaining, but never satisfying. They did not offer anything for my mind to focus and dwell on.
The value of good quality books is remarkable. And when I began finding books that interested me, I was hooked and now I love to read. Recently, I have been working my way through Nancy Ray’s reading list.
When I read books that allow my mind to dwell in the stories, I find myself thinking back to them all day long. Reading is good for my mind, heart, and soul. Those are three things that can be so easily overlooked, but it is important to allow them to rest and restore too in order to be able to fully function at your best.
I hope you find these few tips to be helpful and you can begin to see the value of rest too. As a very productive person, it can be a challenge to slow myself down and fully clear off my to-do list. But, I have found that when I value rest, I set myself up for success in the future. As we enter the second half of the year, it is important that we take a few days to breathe and feel refreshed. That way we can jump back into the busyness of life with a fresh perspective, new inspiration, and peace.