Rest On Purpose

Episode #150

Ever feel like you have to much to do to take some time and rest? Your world seems to spin faster and faster with all the responsibilities and an ever growing to-do list. That is the very reason you need to slow down and rest. We share what rest is and what it isn’t and why it’s so important to work into your daily life. Your body and your family will thank you.


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EPISODE TRANSCRIPT:

Welcome back everyone to another episode here on the Rise Up and Shine podcast. Today we are talking about a much-needed topic that relates to all of us, even me as we speak right now, resting, resting on purpose. So, this is something I know for myself personally and Claudine, we’ve shared on this podcast, and we just know from past experience that ourselves as well as many women, most probably that we have ever talked with can really struggle with resting.

We feel like it’s not okay, we feel if we rest it’s lazy and I really think that we had a misconception of what rest really meant and we didn’t have a conviction on it. I know at least for myself I didn’t and so when we don’t rest, we get exhausted, burned out, overwhelmed, cranky. All the, all the things we do not show up is our best selves when we don’t, we don’t, it’s interesting you said that we don’t understand rest and for many, many years I’m so guilty of this rest for me was lying down and watching tv or nowadays scrolling through, You know, social media or when my kids were young, I would like rest. But I clean a junk drawer at the same time where I was resting while I opened the mail or I was, you know, that was what I considered my rest, which is not, but it’s funny because I had to justify to myself when I was tired in order to sit on the couch for more than you know, 38 seconds.

I had to make like excuses in my brain like, well I’m gonna clean out a junk drawer while I sit here or I’m going to all the mail. Like I had to justify resting, which is such a weird, which is such a weird idea and that’s why today we’re talking about resting on purpose with purpose. There’s a purpose to our rest. Yes, absolutely. There we have to be intentional about rest. I remember having a conversation with a friend a couple of years back and she was saying how she can’t stand to be alone because I was telling her how I changed as I was, you know, growing having a lot of personal growth in my life and I really started valuing just sitting, still, having some time away, not talking. Um I definitely think with the pandemic it showed me how much of an introvert I really am and how much I need to recharge and that I wasn’t always recharging in the best way, especially doing virtual school kids, I was home and but needed, I was needed for one thing or another all the time and that’s what happens with us.

We’re constantly needed. There’s a lot of demands from other people, our families at work, um our calendar, right? And even positive ones, even ones where we want to spend time with friends or go out, it’s still, it can be taxing, we still need a healthy balance. So, as you said, we can show up as our best and we can show up full of energy and confidence and rest and energize. You know, feel more energized so we can um and our brains will fight us on it. I mean that’s part of the problem. Our brains will keep telling us, we’ll make a decision with our prefrontal cortex that we need to rest, right? But then the other part of our brain, the primitive brain is gonna start making excuses. You know, you’re too busy, we don’t have time. If you lay around, you’re gonna be lazy and then you won’t be productive or if you lay around, nothing will get done around here and you know what will the kids think if they see you laying around, what would your husband think if they see you laying around the brain will constantly tell us all these reasons they’ll fight us on our decision, the decision we make to rest intentionally and on purpose.

But if we do then our bodies will start to shut down and it’s like you said we’re gonna get stressed and overwhelmed and cranky and our body needs the rest and that’s something that I just could not give into. And I remember my husband telling me to slow down and I’ve shared this before but for many years and I’d say well there’s rest for the weary in heaven, I’ll rest then and then after living that way for several years then you know my body just started failing and I ended up in the hospital for three days. So, you know my body was like okay if you’re not going to rest, I’m gonna make you rest. We’re just going to go to hospital for a few days. So, um our bodies will shut down. It gets bad gets really bad if we do not take the time to rest. And again, that resting is of our minds and you know all of it our bodies and our minds. But when we’re scrolling through social media watching tv emptying a junk or our body may kind of be resting but our minds are not in our minds need that rest as well. Right?

Well and you think about it stimulation, right? I mean this really helps me understand this on a deeper level is especially with having kids and the more I’ve learned about Children and their developing brains and stimulation and the stimulation how it affects them even in their mood. I learned just a lot about myself. I learned that if I’m still having a lot of stimulation, I’m not getting that um that true rest, you know my brain is still working and so and that’s why when you think, well I’ll rest, I’ll rest when I sleep, but then when I sleep then I’m dreaming a whole bunch about all the things that need to get done or things that I’m worried about are anxious about and I’m not getting the needed rest at that time either. And so, and then it just slowly chips away at us. And I was thinking as you were talking, the shame, you know, like you said, if someone saw me right now just lying on the couch or taking a nap or just sitting quietly and staring off, what would they think?

Oh my gosh, they’re gonna think I’m lazy, I’m not productive, I’m not getting the things done. Um You know, I’m not doing a good job that we just put these stories in our heads that cause a shame and then so we feel like I got to do, I gotta do, do do so when we do do, do we feel like we’re kinda having to earn our keep right, like well good. I got all my, my ducks in a row, I did all the things on my list but it’s we’re not rejuvenated, we’re not showing up, Well we’re exhausted, we’re depleting ourselves so quickly, so and again on the flip side when we’re doing, we’re kind of doing from this place of Shane, at least that’s what I recognized in myself. I’m trying to hit all the things on my list because someone might ask me about it or from the outside, it needs to look like I have it all together and you know, I mean, even for forgetting something, I would feel bad about myself man, and I remember my mother in law at one point, it’s like, well that’s okay.

What? So, what if you forget something? Oh wow, that’s true. So, what not? Perfect. But it’s just really interesting because if we’re feeling shame, whether we’re resting or taking a break or we’re feeling shame or the shame is kind of motivating us to be super, super ultra productive. It’s time to start really looking, you know, taking a deeper look at that. Yeah, it’s so important to do this and look at this because we do need to check in with ourselves and I think we, as a society, we’re so busy. It’s rush, rush, rush at least I certainly know when my four kids were home, it was always going from one event to the next. I never had time to just stop and check in and like how does my body feel my feelings, how, what is going on in my heart, what is going on in my mind, what is going on in my soul. I was just going from one activity to the next and I never connected with myself and when we do that, we don’t really know how we’re really doing and we don’t, we can’t meet our true needs, right?

Because we’re just going, going, going, it’s almost like I was in survival mode for 25 years, right? And that’s the fight or flight. You know, we’re constantly in that mode. It’s really harsh on our bodies and on our systems. If we do want to rise up and shine, we really need to be present and in order to be present, we need to make sure we get that rest. And, and I was thinking I was not good at knowing my needs. I was so good at meeting other people’s needs and as women, as moms, that’s what we do, we, where is the need, how can I help? Um, how can I fix whatever it might be. Right. And so, we can be much more in tune with other people’s needs and not to ourself and we think that’s the right thing to do. But we, there has to be this balance. We have to be in tune with ourselves, our bodies. Like even today, it’s been a really challenging day for various reasons and um, you know, I was out of town this weekend, which was very relaxing and enjoyable, and it filled my cup in a certain way.

Um, but there’s still a long drive to and from and not sleeping well. So now I feel super exhausted on top of a rough day, but I just had to stop and think because I can either run myself to the ground by, go, go going or I can stop and ask myself what do I need right now? Do I need sleep? Do I need just quiet time? What do I need? Do I need water? Did I eat very much today? You know, I mean kind of go through the little mental checklist, what do I need and that’s okay. It’s not selfish to be in touch with what you need and to meet your own needs. We need to do that; we need to have that balance. You know, it’s funny for me, I had to really give this some thought while I was preparing this, and I thought why other than I had four kids, and I was super busy. That’s what my brain kept telling me. You have so much to do, and you don’t have time to rest. The other component of it is when we sit still, when we don’t have any other stimulation, we don’t have a tv on or social media or whatever else to distract us.

They we’re starting to connect with our thoughts and our emotions and sometimes they’re not all that pleasant. Right? I look back and I think how many years did I spend subconsciously unconsciously distracting myself, wanting to think or feel and I didn’t want to think and feel because at the time I didn’t have the tools, I did not know how to manage my mind, I did not know how to manage my emo, so I just didn’t want to feel. So, it was just easier to keep busy. And I really think for me that was definitely a big part and I know I’m not the only one I know so many women just keep going, going because you never have time to stop and think and feel and you just drop dead in bed out of exhaustion. And it can be, you know, challenging when we first sit down and be still and connect with our thoughts and our emotions because there might be things in our lives, we’re not super happy about, we’re not ready to deal with it, so we just keep distracting ourselves.

That’s not a way to live. That’s definitely not the way to rise up and shine. You know, best light. You can’t live your best life when you’re in denial or distraction. So well, let’s start with a few practical Ashley.

So, number 1 – one of my favorites, take deep breaths, breathing is so helpful for calming our brains, calming that flood of hormones right, that are going throughout our body when we get stressed um or irritated, kind of like what you said, even living on survival mode, right? On default. And if we’re constantly stressed and exhausted, we’re just living on default. We’re not living intentionally and taking deep breaths can really help us rejuvenate physically mentally and we have to allow ourselves that time and that space to do it even if it’s driving in the car or if you need to go take a couple of minutes in your closet, um what or go on a walk around the block, just focus on your breathing because it helps center you um and helps kind of rain in your mind because what happens again, our mind is just on default and we’re thinking about all the things um we need to do or like you said, a lot of our negative thoughts that we try to distract ourselves from.

But if we give ourselves that space and we’re aware, then just start with some breathing. So, there’s so many breathing techniques that are so helpful. I’ve used them personally. I know Claudine, you’ve used them personally and they are so calming. Um and that’s such a great place to start and I’m pretty sure I think I have it is a pre resource on my website. I’m not sure if you do. I think I put it on a long time ago, so hopefully it’s still there. Yeah, that’s such a good one because I’m one of those people that I can catch myself holding my breath, forget to breathe. You know, it’s like a very shallow breather, which is not helpful.

The second practical is turn everything off a true rest means you’re not getting that external stimulation. So turn everything off, put your phone away for five minutes, turn it off or put it in a separate room or you know turn off the tv again my rest for many, many, many years and still to this day I have to be really careful is I’ll turn the tv on even if I’m watching I just kind of have that background noise on and um you know that’s still when you’re hearing voices, your mind is still processing.

So it’s not a true rest and you know when we say take these rest times it’s not like you have to schedule an hour or two to just lay there, I mean even 5 to 10 minutes of silence of quiet, just sitting there sitting and checking in with yourself, taking a few deep breaths connecting with how you’re feeling and what you’re thinking, that could be plenty 5 to 10 minutes. We’re not talking hours here and everyone has 5-10 minutes, I don’t care how busy you are, you have 5-10 minutes to just rest to be still for a few minutes and connect with yourself. Oh yeah, even on right before we started recording this, I was coming back from Costco and I had the music on and I’m like you know thinking because I always have something on so what do I want to listen to And I started listening to something and then even I was more in tune that this is too much. It was incredibly difficult day, very overstimulating. I want nothing on right now and it was 5-8 minutes of the rest of the drive home where just nothing and it was so much better.

I just felt better. I didn’t feel so overstimulated. And just if you give yourself that time to pay attention to those things, those little things that again, that is what I needed in the moment. Exactly. Exactly. So good. I know. Right, right.

Our third and last practical is manage your mind. And again, this is about really working with our thoughts, the thoughts that say you’re too busy or you don’t have time. We really need to manage our mind because we’ll make a decision. I’m going to rest for 10 minutes here. But then our brain, that primitive brain will fight us on. It will say give us all the reasons why we cannot rest. Right. Right. I find a picture like that, you know, the little good angel and the little not so good one on your shoulder. I kind of feel like that with my prefrontal cortex and then my primitive brain. They’re kind of both sitting there and one of them is trying to make you know, great decisions for myself and the other one is like do you really need to do that? Turn on Netflix, it won’t be that bad. You’re still resting. Managing our minds is a skill. Learning how to manage our brains, learn how to train our brains is a skill and that’s what you and I both do with our clients. We help women learn that skill and how to manage their mind, how to train their brains. And when you start doing that, then you can start also managing your emotions.

And it’s funny, real quick story. I was talking to my coach because every life coach has their own life coach, right? Talking about um my business. So, you know, now I’m an empty nester and so my kids are gone. So, you think I’d have all this time to rest, but I decided to start a business. And so of course you can work seven days a week doing that, there’s always something, there’s always something to learn. So, I find myself in an office, my office a lot and I said something to her. I said, well I was feeling like um, oh I had a to do list and I said it’s just taking me so long to do everything on my to do list. I feel like I used to be able to do things really fast and we connected, I connected that I value speed and she goes, what if doing things slow was the value?

And I was like, you know, and it was just so funny just managing my mind that for me, I value speed And but that’s not necessarily true, right? And when I value speed, then I feel stressed, and I feel rushed and then I feel behind not in the front of the eight ball because I’m not doing it fast enough and I should have conquered that 24 item to do list in a week. I am underneath me and I’m still working at it, plugging along and you know, and so really managing your mind and feeling the emotion because when we manage our minds then we can manage how we feel, and I was feeling rushed and stressed and then she just helped me get some perspective on that. What if slow was the way to go and that was you know, the higher value and I was like, it’s such an interesting Yeah, it’s true, right? Who said fast was good. Who said that, who? I just said that I made it up, just not even the truth. I like that slow is the way to go unless you’re driving, we don’t want to be behind.

You know, I know that there’s a lot and resting on purpose could seem silly to some; they’re thinking I rest all the time. But true rest through intentional purposeful rest is something that you know, we can all grow in and get better at and I came across this scripture in Hebrews 4:10-11. I thought it was so interesting. It said… I have never seen it. I I know I’ve read the whole bible but for some reason it stood out to me differently today, but it says, “those who enjoy God’s rest also rest from their work. So let us make every effort to enjoy that rest.”

Let us make every effort to enjoy that rest. Ladies, it’s scripture it’s God’s telling us to do it. So, on that happy note, I hope you all take five or 10 minutes after listening to this podcast, take some deep breaths, turn everything off and then enjoy some rest. Until next time. Take care.