I am still learning how to rest. This continues to be a challenge, but here’s what I think I know so far.
One thing that isn’t restful, is sitting down in front of a computer and watching videos and skimming the internet. This is how I got in trouble with social media before. When I was worn out, looking at pictures of happy, successful people was completely demoralizing and I didn’t even realize how it was affecting me. (For the record, I don’t think social media is a moral evil. It’s a tool, just like anything else, some people are able to use it effectively, others aren’t. I am one of the people who cannot use it effectively). Entertainment and rest are two totally different things, and care should be taken to separate the two.
For me, sometimes being restful just requires being full. I get hungry, and then I get tired. I don’t even have an unhealthy relationship with food to overcome, I just get more and more tired until I remember that I haven’t eaten recently. I know it sounds incredibly stupid, but I am an otherwise functional adult who has to retrace my steps to figure out if I’ve eaten enough over the course of a day.
Naps, obviously. I equate naps with drinking, relaxing and nice in moderation, but if it takes up more than six hours in a day you may have gone too far.
Sometimes the only way to finish a project is to walk away from it for a little while. Some of the best breaks for me are:
- Going for long drives, often without music.
- Rummaging around through antique stores.
- Loud social gatherings.
- Cooking something extravagant and time-consuming
Inspiration may find you working, but rest is what allows you to work in the first place.