I am not very good at rest and moving slow. I am a list maker, a planner and a get ‘er doner. It feels unnatural to do life any other way and most of the time, I’m actually happiest when I’m productive. Do you relate? I have friends who do and some who don’t! However you’re built, there’s not a right or wrong way to do life! But for myself, I tend to be happiest on my feet and moving most of the time.
Strangely, I’ve been feeling a very strong pull these days to make rest a priority in my life. We’ve always planned ‘rest days’ as a family but I’ve often felt a lot of anxiety on those days as I tried to REST. My eyes would roam the room, seeing all the things that could be done. Even if I resisted the pull to do something, my mind would be running a hundred miles an hours with future tasks and plans. Resting has been a stressful endeavor for me!
After 6 years of being self-employed, running my little business ‘BonHome’, flipping houses, I decided to become an employee for a change. The real estate market has been a little topsy turvy this past year (I’m sure you’ve noticed!) and I wasn’t really feeling the fire doing generic remodels anymore. There was only so much room for creativity with my projects. After my last project, I told my husband it might be the last one. So I’ve been on a new adventure with a job that has set hours and an early start… 7:30am everyday! It’s definitely been an adjustment (not a morning person!!) but I like my work and after 6 weeks, I feel like I’ve found ways to fit in the things I had plenty of time for before… workouts, time with friends… it’s not enough time but it works for now. During this last month and a half, I’ve noticed that I’ve needed to be more conscious about taking time to rest. Not having an abundance of time to schedule how I choose has left me feeling like I need to budget my off-work hours more carefully.
As the holidays were sneaking up on us and we looked at the calendar, I started to feel panic at how full things were getting. We are notorious for filling our calendar TO THE BRIM in our everyday life and for the most part, not sorry about it. But this year, I knew I needed something different for the holidays. It may be the big life changes that have shaken up my routine or maybe just wisdom as I’m getting a little bit older but I’m listening. I’m taking time to sit on the couch when there’s plenty to do. I’m reading another chapter when I have a pile of mail to go through. And the more I do it, the easier it’s getting. It’s almost like working out. At first, it’s really hard but as you get stronger, it starts to feel good and you even crave the movement. That’s how I’m starting to feel about rest. It feels good. I’m craving it.
For the first time in my adult life, my holidays are not jam packed and I am not exhausted 3 days before Christmas. I could almost cry at this realization. How sad that it’s taken me this long to even attempt to slow down during the holidays. There will always be dishes, laundry, errands, mail to open, invitations, appointments… you know the drill. The list never ends. For whatever it’s worth, I hope you feel inspired to take a break.
I’ll leave you with this. It’s my wish for all of us.
I wish you quiet nights, warm drinks, soft blankets and good movies. I wish you laughter in the company of people you love and feel safe with. I wish you good food that you enjoy without a single thought about calories… eating for the joy of it! I wish you time to sit and take a moment to feel how you feel. I wish you really good sleep in comfy pajamas. I wish you good books and good music. And most of all… This Christmas I wish you the slowness of the holiday season. It does exist and it’s there for you to find!