Most people run themselves straight into the ground during the holiday season and drag themselves into the New Year, nowhere near ready to rev their engines and roll into the New Year chasing their goals. The fact is: rest is important all year long, especially during the holidays!
Rest is important every single night, no matter what the season, but the holiday season adds a level of importance to your sleep that you may not know about.
What is Rest?
The definition of rest is: “to cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, or recover strength.” So I’m not just talking about sleep, although that is super important. When we are tired, we get cranky, are likely to overeat, become less productive, and have other no-fun situations.
I want to address a broader spectrum here. During this time-demanding, sensory overload, somewhat emotional season, it is necessary to take a little time for yourself and rest.
Rest is important.
The whole point of rest is to regroup, rejuvenate, and find a little peace in the midst of the mayhem. It’s a little like hitting the reset button. Taking time for ourselves is not being lazy; it’s actually necessary to gather the strength to continue doing our daily deals.
Rest is important to our productivity.
We take rest days from exercise, right? In fact, our trainers encourage “active rest days.” Meaning we don’t lie around all day but mix it up by doing something more recreational vs. a hardcore workout.
This active rest allows room for our muscles to be used in a different way, adds variety to our routine, and rejuvenates the mind-body connection.
We take days of rest from work too. We fill those days with activities we enjoy or find relaxing or just plain fun. Gardening, hiking, taking the kids to the park, cooking a family dinner, reading a book, whatever FUN looks like to you.
Nowhere does it say that we have to be inactive during rest and relaxation. Mixing up our activities challenges our brains in other ways making us refreshed and renewed.
Rest is important throughout the day.
OK, maybe you don’t have time for long bouts of relaxation during this holiday season. BUT you can certainly rest, refresh and regroup in chunks throughout the day.
Think about how you begin your day.
Maybe you give yourself the first 5-10 minutes of the day to NOT look at your to-do list, social media, email, text messages, etc. Rather, take the time to breathe deeply, pray, meditate, and practice gratitude.
At the very least, just chill and imagine yourself in your happy place or visualize yourself hitting one of your goals. If you make this a ritual, it can transform your whole day!
Think about the middle of your day.
Keep in mind you can take 1-5 minute rest breaks throughout the day. A few minutes of conscious, slow breathing can help you when you’re feeling frustrated. Maybe do this BEFORE doing something you know will stress you out.
Like, I don’t know, maybe before you go into the mall to shop! Instead of thinking of the crowds, close your eyes and picture people opening the presents you’re about to buy! Do the same with the grocery store; instead of the long lines, think about how delicious your feast is going to be!
And, Yes. Naps are allowed.
Lastly, if you are actually just flat-out tired, there’s no shame in taking a little nap! Go for it, even if it’s just for 15 minutes! We all know it; naps are the bomb. Ok, if you’ve missed some of our videos, the entire series is on our Facebook Group page, NewStart Insiders; check it out, and while you are there, be sure to download our NewMind Holiday Handbook – full of journal pages and challenges to keep you fresh and ready for the best holiday season yet!