Do I Know How to Rest? Probably Not.

Exciting news – for the first time in a while, I’m going on vacation! I’m going to see my family, enjoy time off work, and hopefully reset and recharge in the way many of us do on vacation. But one thing I’m nervous about is that I’m going to try doing something that doesn’t come easy to me: I’m going to try to rest. I recently learned that not only am I pretty terrible at resting, but it’s probably something I’ve never learned how to do. So how do I handle that?

I never really thought about rest as an activity or something necessary to do. Maybe that’s because I didn’t think I needed it; maybe I thought I was already doing a pretty good job of it? To be honest, it wasn’t something I considered a problem – I thought being tired and exhausted most of the time is just what it means to be an adult. But after learning more about the power of rest, and then going through an experience where I continuously rejected that rest, I realized something needs to change.

Last month, 2+ years into the pandemic, I finally tested positive for COVID. There’s a lot of processing I still need to do around that, but the one of the most important and immediate things I learned was that I don’t know how to rest. With something like COVID, where you’re not quite sure how it will affect, you, rest is sometimes the only thing that might help.

Even though I knew I needed rest, I would end up doing things to push myself physically when I absolutely didn’t have to. It was pretty sobering and hard to grapple with, but I’m very glad I learned this lesson, because it’s something I wish I knew a long time ago. My relationship with rest, like all other relationships with myself, is a lifelong endeavor where I try to learn as I go, and try to make improvements along the way.

So, back to this upcoming vacation. Not only do I know I need rest during this time, but it’s also something I want. I want to rest. I want to recharge. But I’m pretty nervous that, for whatever reason, I won’t have the ability to do so. I don’t know why, but I’m a little embarrassed by my inability to relax – I guess it just seems like something everyone should be able to do, and I just can’t for some reason.

But I’m going to try and not push pressure on myself this time. I might not know how to rest right now, but I hope I will one day. Either way, it’s very unlikely for this aspect of my personality to change overnight, so the best thing I can do in the mean time is try to learn more about myself as best I can and find useful ways to use that information. My relationship with myself changes every day, and this is just one more aspect of that. Hope you get what you need this week, friends. Peace and love.

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