In the book of Genesis, God created the universe, the earth, and man…and then He rested on the 7th day. Rest is not just good for our soul, but it is good for our brains.
Studies prove over and over again the many mental and physical health reasons why rest is important for us. Deep down inside, we all know we need rest to recharge, but how do we manage to do that?
Being a busy mom of two kids 3 years old and under, I have had some struggles with resting a full day, but I have found strategies where I can recharge for gaps at a time will help.
1) Consider a Tech Sabbatical.
I can’t take ALL the credit for this strategy. You can learn more about it through one of my favorite bloggers, Phylicia Masonheimer. She has enlightened my life on productivity, which of course, includes rest.
She takes a full day break from her phone every Sunday. She literally turns her cell phone off and doesn’t touch it…for one whole day.
I took the strategy a bit further last July and fasted from my cell phone. I decided not to touch my phone from 7pm til 7am the next day…everyday for the month of July.
Not having my phone near me was quite liberating. I was more focused, more productive. I gave my kids the attention they needed and I was able to fall asleep at bedtime much quicker than I normally do.
Consider doing this for your needs – whether it’s your cell phone, laptop, TV…whatever. Take a break. Take a break from it during times and days you normally use it.
2) Take a nap.
This is a no brainer. During some of my most intense and lethargic days, I simply take a little nap. Whether it’s 30 mins or 1 hour or 2 hours. Sometimes, I feel like we are all grown toddlers who could use a little siesta.
And sometimes, during one of those little naps is when God will give me an amazing dream where He speaks to me and gives me direction.
3) Read a Book.
Read a book that motivates you, a book that inspires you. Some of the greatest leaders I know read the kind of books you would consider “self-help” books.
Read books that teach you to think outside of the box. Books that challenge you to be a better you. Better yet, read your Bible!
A 15 minute read a day can benefit anyone. Reading just for 15 minutes a day…who knows you can finish 2 books in one month. What an accomplishment!
It’s funny to think reading could give you rest, however, the National Sleep Foundation recommends reading as a “calming activity.”
Recharge your brain. Recharge your mind. Read a book!
4) Stretch & Meditate
Commonly known as yoga. Some Christians will “refrain” from yoga due to their own spiritual convictions. Unless the Bible specifically says, “Thou shall not do yoga,” I do not see a harm in it.
Dedicate your practice to Jesus. Choose a verse and Mediate on His word. Be gentle with doing certain moves. Rename the moves if you have to (I get it, why do these moves need to be called “crow” or “cobra?”).
Many of us live sedentary lifestyles and stretching is a good way to relieve stress and circulate blood flow through your body.
I have started practicing yoga once a week and getting my 3 year old son involved and he loves it! It’s a great way for both of us to get exercise and spend quality time together.
5) Don’t Cook.
I cook almost everyday for my family, so we can remain eating our way through a healthy lifestyle. For me personally, cooking is actually enjoyable, as I know the food I make provides comfort and full bellies.
However, for 1 person to consistently feed a family of four every single day…can be a daunting task.
Choose the one day where you don’t have to lift a finger. Order take out. Make extras on Friday, so you don’t cook on Sunday. Maybe it isn’t cooking, maybe it’s doing laundry.
Choose a day where you take a break from all those tasks and enjoy quality time with your family.
I hope these suggestions are helpful and if you have anymore, I would love to hear about it! I pray God is always with you!