If you are not convinced that rest is worth the space in your diary, check out the survey. “There are so many scientifically proven benefits to taking time to relax,” says Giscombé. “What stands out is the increase in stress resistance, increased clarity of thought, which leads to better performance at school and work and reduces the risk of serious health conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure.” It’s also a great way to push the refresh button, he adds.
What do the goals of the rest of the IRL look like?
Just as you can write a to-do list at the beginning of the week or plan which meals will feed you Monday through Friday, you will want to clarify what your rest goals are and how you plan to put them into action. “I think this can be a great practice to start the week in a positive way,” says Giscombé. “Maybe I would frame it as ‘rest intentions’ to relieve stress. In addition, I would be careful to make my ‘rest intentions’ realistic and not too high.”
With that in mind, rest goals will be 100 percent unique to you. “Some examples would be taking a 15 to 20 minute break every 90 minutes, taking one to three minutes to do a short meditation every morning when you wake up and your feet are on the floor or taking a warm bath every Sunday before the week begins, “says Giscombé. It really’s up to you. So experiment and let go of activities that do not recharge your battery.
Overcoming the guilt of setting rest goals
Throughout the process, it is perfectly understandable if you are still experiencing some resistance to a timeout. We live in a culture that glorifies business and fuss — so much so that we may feel uncomfortable and challenged to fight. “When you observe these feelings of guilt, knowing that there is nothing wrong with feeling what you feel,” says Giscombé.
At the moment, practicing a little awareness can help you overcome these feelings. “Take a break and maybe take a deep breath, inhale through your nose and out of your mouth, and then gently let that feeling go,” says Giscombé. “Rinse and repeat if necessary.”
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