Today is Sunday, and a great day to remember that one of the best ways to take action in life is to also set aside downtime. My quote today is a from a friend, Ted Sanborn, who said, “The human body is not made to work seven days a week non-stop.”
Do you work every day of the week? If you are a parent or caregiver, your answer is probably “yes.” At the same time, we all need some time away from our regular responsibilities in order to recharge our batteries, physically rest, allow our minds to wander, and pursue non work-related endeavors.
For many, the work week runs Monday through Friday. If this is your schedule, choose a day over the weekend (or part of a day, if this is all you can carve out), to step away from whatever the demands of your job may be and invest in yourself. If your schedule requires you to work other days, try to find another day each week that you set aside for this purpose.
What might you do during your “rest day?” Lots of things, including (but certainly not limited to):
- Going outside (walk, ski, jog, skate, play, ride…)
- Cooking or baking
- Working with your hands (woodworking, gardening, knitting, crafting, painting, drawing…)
- Visiting (Remember visiting? when you sat and talked with people, in person, with no agenda?)
- Indulging (spa, sauna, manicure, massage…)
- Sitting by a lit fireplace
- Writing letters
- Spectating at a game
- Playing board games
- Listening to music
- Attending a concert
- Constructing something (Legos, blocks, dominos, clay…)
- Praying, meditating, attending a worship service
- Visiting a museum
- Giving yourself a day off from an unpleasant task (e.g. don’t make your bed)
- Completing a jigsaw, sudoku, or crossword puzzle
The key to relaxation is to do something that doesn’t feel like work to you; to take a break. One man’s rest is another man’s work, so customize your downtime to meet your desires. If you have little ones and never get a break, see if you can hire a sitter or trade parenting duties with your partner or friends in a similar stage.
Also, consider doing something that does not involve a screen. Give your brain a break from screens. Let yourself be bored and see what happens.
Taking time to rest and refresh each week will enhance your ability to be productive the rest of the time.
How might you carve out time to rest?