Intentional About Rest

I can’t believe it’s already December and the year is coming to an end! But, new month means a new wellness challenge.

Before I get into all that, let’s go back to last month. My wellness challenge for November was to practice gratitude, and I was particularly focused on being more grateful for the home in which our family is currently living. This was a really good exercise for me. I can’t say that it made me love this place any more than I did before. However, I am now more content as I continue to wait until we can move to our own place, hopefully next year.

This month, my wellness challenge is to listen to Christmas music everyday. It is the gift I’m giving myself this year… Well, one of the gifts. I created a playlist with some songs that I want to listen to for Advent. I already have a bible reading plan in place to finish the entire bible in a year, so I’m keeping it very simple this year for Advent. I’ll just be listening to a song each day and reflecting on its message in a separate journal. The playlist is called He is With Us. Find it on Spotify here and YouTube here.

I’ve been on a bit of a break from writing and making videos for most of November. This wasn’t something I planned on doing. I had a lot of work to do for the Etsy shop and in revamping the Hey Sister brand in general. This also wasn’t something I planned on doing; the idea just came to me one day and I had to run with it.

The work that involved consumed me for about four days straight. It’s work that I really enjoy and, I think because of that, I tend to lose myself while I’m doing it. I’ll just work away, losing sight of the time, and can’t seem to stop until it’s all finished. After it was all done, I wasn’t really tired. My eyes hurt a bit because I was on the computer a lot, but I wasn’t exhausted. As a result, I didn’t rest on the weekend as I usually do.

Normally, I use my weekdays to prepare for resting on the weekend.

I make sure to do most of our chores during the week. Laundry is done over a few evenings. I also meal prep on Fridays so that I don’t have much cooking to do on the weekend. That way our entire family gets to rest and spend time together.

None of that was done in that first week I was off. That weekend, I didn’t do anything physically strenuous, but my mind did not get the rest it needed. I spent the time trying to catch up what wasn’t done, and then tried to plan and prepare for the coming week. This ultimately led to feeling burnt out for a couple weeks.

I had trouble sleeping. I had migraines or slight headaches almost daily. I was physically exhausted, unmotivated and just barely functioning. When challenges came up with homeschooling, I did not have the patience to address them correctly. I wasn’t able to do my household tasks as usual. I, obviously, was unable to write and create videos to encourage others. And then discouragement kicked in; I started thinking of quitting this or cutting out that.

Not taking the time to rest impacted my ability to live out my calling.

We are not designed to live this way. Although painful, I’m thankful for the experience because it forced me to take a long, much needed, rest. It also reminded me to be more mindful and intentional about doing that going forward.

This week in my Happy Journal is focused on being kind to myself. I used the Wellness sticker book by The Happy Planner. I know the colours aren’t really seasonal or christmasy, but I just wanted something really soft and soothing with a bit of holiday whimsy thrown in.

What are some ways you incorporate intentional rest into your days?

Joy & Peace, Sister!

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