The last year has been filled with a lot of hard work.
I’ve been crushing it at work. I’ve continued a rigorous writing schedule. I’ve filled my life with exercise and sports.
And then it hit me..
I haven’t taken a good rest in quite some time.
That’s a problem. Especially when I look at the vacation days I haven’t used.
We Forget To Rest
My vacation days were piling up. Mainly because of a major project launch within my organization.
This project has required a lot of preparation and setup. It’s also required a lot of travel.
Then, add in all the other activities in my day to day life and there wasn’t a lot of time for rest.
All of these activities I’ve been doing are good. Some are even great. But it’s come at a cost.
That cost was my ability to rest.
Why did I push rest to the back of my life? I never really did. I let it slip to the background and forgot about it.
This is what so many people do.
We get our projects. We get our hobbies. We get our busyness. And we forget to rest.
Why We Need Rest
Research has shown that a lack of sleep/rest can be deadly. One study even shows that a lack of sleep impairs our judgement in the same way as being drunk.
Our bodies were not designed to run on a 24/7 schedule. They were designed for periods of rest.
Create Periods Of Rest
A few months ago, Pam and I went on an extended weekend. We decided the perfect place to vacation would be Saint Ignace in the upper peninsula of Michigan.
It’s a picturesque area.
We were able to cross the Mackinac Bridge and relax on our lakefront campsite. We read books (I devoured Essentialism and Pam read through a couple of Jim Butcher books). We toured the Soo Locks. We climbed Castle Rock. We spent time with family.
And, one of the best things about the trip, we had very spotty cell phone coverage.
This allowed me to do one thing pretty well.
Knowing I was unable to make and receive phone calls, emails, and text messages began, at first, as stressful. I wanted my ability to communicate and I wanted it now!
But, something amazing happened.
As the weekend continued, I began to miss the incoming emails and phone calls less and less.
Rest does that to us. Rest brings us back to the place of interactions and conversations. Rest allows us to recharge our batteries. Rest even allows us to create memories.
We found our rest in getting away from constant connectivity. You may find it somewhere else.
Still, I encourage you to find time to rest.
You’ll come back recharged and renewed. You’ll have a clearer sense of purpose. You’ll do better work.