Do you ever feel restless? That weeks and weeks pass, and you barely have a moment of alone time? Let me follow up with do you ever feel guilty for telling people no?
Let me set a scene for you: You’ve had a long week and made plans for the coming weekend, but you really need to stay home and rest. You’ve made promises to go out or have an opportunity to go to a fantastic event, but you know that you really need to say no.
I am here to tell you that that is ok! Even with promises, take the time to bring into your account what is best for you!
There will always be an excuse not to rest.
Last weekend, I had this amazing opportunity to serve about eighty students and staff members in Vermont for the Navigators Fall Retreat. I volunteered to help in the kitchen. I got to make grilled cheese, soup, stir-fry, pancakes, pasta, and more for let me repeat I cooked for eighty people. I had to chop up eleven onions. Which I did with minimal crying. I woke up early to have some alone time with God before I had to start cooking breakfast and stayed up late to prep the kitchen for the next day. It was a lot of work but also a ton of fun working two other amazing God fearing women. I came back last Monday exhausted, and I had no time to rest before the work week.
As the weekend approached, I had a lot of decisions to make. Do I stay home and miss an amazing daughters conference? Do I miss out on plans Friday night and stay in?
As I had a lot of options Friday night, I stayed home and did laundry. Saturday morning, I slept in till my body was not able to stay asleep. I thought to myself, “Wow, when is the last time I did that?” I honestly can’t remember.
I think it is so easy to have FOMO by not going out and participating in the “fun” but I’ve come to realize that disappointing myself is worse than disappointing others. Something I tell people is that the only person who can really look out for you is you! Be your own advocate.
Now I think the idea of rest is something that people know. You might be reading this post and thinking to yourself, “I get it, Katie, I know even God rested on the seventh day of creation. That’s one I have heard before.”
But this post isn’t all about us needing rest. Most people know that. This post is about finding ways to put it into practice. With a busy work, school, and social life schedule it can be trying even to think where am I going to pencil in my rest?
First off, take a good look at your schedule week to week. What is your day to day schedule like?. Have you over-committed yourself? Look to see if there is ONE thing a week you can say NO to. Don’t skip this step. Do it. Look at your schedule. If you can’t decide, have a friend look it over who can tell you how you are over-committing yourself. By saying no to one thing, you’re actually saying YES to yourself!
Second, and how much sleep do you get a night? Do you really get enough sleep? Is there one to two weekends a month where you get more than eight hours? If not start taking the time to give your body enough sleep. Your body will not regret it! Coffee as great as it is will not help you as much as sleep can. Starbucks cannot keep you awake forever.
Are you the kind of person who needs complete alone time? Where you don’t directly interact with people for about 12-24 hours. I know that I need that. Find ways to get the space away you need from roommates and parents. Go to a park or movie by yourself, see if you can dogsit while a friend is away, or politely tell your roommates you need some space that night and won't be hanging out like usual. Living and being around people constantly is tiresome. Most of the time we can’t even tell that it’s physically and emotionally draining. Even if the people are fantastic,and you love your job, taking time to rest and reflect is something that should not be skipped on.
In fact, you probably leave it off your to-do more often than you should. Let me encourage you to add it on with PERMANENT MARKER. Do not pass go or collect 200 dollars till you learn to add rest in your schedule.
Have an accountability partner for rest. Have someone who will check in on you and ask have you taken time to rest this week? Do it!
Have you ever regretted resting? Have you ever regretted taking a bath or nap for yourself? Have you ever regretted taking the night in by yourself and ordering your favorite takeout? I’m going to guess that the answer is no. This is self-care!
So learn to rest and repeat. Do not settle for resting just once a month. Learn how to rest week to week. Learn how to take the time you need for yourself. If you don’t make it a habit now, you most likely won’t be able to figure out how to pencil it in ever.
Things to Remember this Week:
Resting is not Selfish
Disappointing others is not as bad as Disappointing Yourself!
Help others keep accountability for Rest.
Jesus took Naps to. Like when you fell asleep on the boat in Mark 4:38. (True Story)