“Hard work is important. So are play and nonproductivity. My worth is tied not to my productivity but to my existence. I am worthy of rest”Glennon Doyle, Untamed
Anyone else need this as a nearly CONSTANT reminder? Seriously, I know it can’t just be me.
I know I’m not the only one who’s had the experience going and going until an illness forced me to stop. I know I’m not the only one who’s reached for a sweet treat or a caffeinated beverage to keep me going when my body was asking me for rest. I know I’m not the only one who, despite now making a conscious effort to prioritize rest (going to bed early, meditating, taking time for myself), still struggles regularly with feelings of guilt or anxiety over “not doing enough”.
The reason I know I’m not the only one who’s had these experiences, who needs this reminder is because the society we live in repeatedly sends us the message that our worth is tied to our productivity. It’s a belief we’ve internalized and to challenge it requires practice and conscious effort.
The good news is, those practices don’t have to be a huge time commitment. I invite you to take a couple minutes to try this with me:
Take a moment to check in with how you’re sitting or standing. If you’re slouching, see if you can be a little more upright in a way that still feels comfortable.
Feel into the support underneath you (your seat and/or the floor beneath your feet), can you give your body permission to let go into that support, even just a little bit more. What does it feel like to let your body rest in this way, to be held by an external support?
You might close your eyes and start to pay attention to your internal experience (your breath, the sensations of your body, your mood/energy levels). How does it feel to turn your attention from the outside in?
Then, with your eyes open or closed, you might grab opposite arms and give your arms a gentle squeeze as you repeat to yourself, “May I know that I am worthy of rest”. Giving your arms a gentle squeeze each time you repeat it, almost as if you were embedding the message in your body through your hands. Notice the reaction in your body as you let this message land a few times.
Take a moment to notice how you feel after that brief practice. Feeling free to take a few more moments to come back to the sensations of your body and breath if the last practice stirred up some deep beliefs about worthiness and productivity.
Simple practices like this, when done with consistency can have huge impacts! Rest is a key component to living the life you want to live because it is only in slowing down and listening that we can hear the voice of our inner guidance. If you’d like to explore more ways to cultivate rest in your life, please reach out!