We live in a relentlessly non-stop world. We as a society seem to have accepted that being “crazy busy” is a way of life. To keep up with our “crazy busy” lives, we work more hours, we don’t get enough sleep, we drink more coffee, and we exercise less. Well, if you ask me, that’s plain crazy. This summer I plan on going against the grain. My plan is to intentionally embrace rest for my mind, body, and soul. Want to join me?
Whatever Happened To The Lazy Days of Summer?
As a child, I remember summer as the time for relaxation and fun. My family didn’t do summer camps. (But I always dreamed of how much fun a summer sleep away camp would be thanks to one of my favorite movies as a kid, Parent Trap!)
Instead of camp, we had lazy summers. My mom was home with us and encouraged us to spend our summers playing. Crazy, I know.
So we spent lazy days at the pool, going to the park, hanging out with the kids in the neighborhood, or doing nothing at all.
When I think of those long, summer days, I feel rested. And, I can vividly remember how stress-free and relaxing it was to do nothing. How wonderful it was to live without a schedule or a care in the world.
Now, I’m sure it wasn’t quite as carefree for my mom, but I know she found rest in the summers, too. She didn’t have to shuttle the kids around. And, she had time to herself as we roamed the neighborhood.
I also remember how excited I was to begin the school year in the fall. My body and mind were done resting, and I was ready to take on the school year.
This eagerness to return to school in the fall, coupled with the springtime anticipation for the school year to end and summer to begin, reminds me of a quote I heard recently:
“Rest until you feel like playing, then play until you feel like resting, period. Never do anything else.” Martha Beck.
Our bodies are hardwired for cycles of work and rest.
When I think back on those lazy days of summer, I wonder if I’ll ever be able to experience that level of rest again.
If I dig a little deeper, I must acknowledge that my inability to fully rest comes down to the choices I make on a daily basis.
And, that brings me back to the “crazy busy” way of life many of us have adopted. Why not stop the “crazy busy” life we lead – at least for a summer. Or, at the very least, why not slow it down a whole lot.
Okay, I know that you may not be able to have a full summer of rest. But what about a month, a week, or even a weekend of rest?
The truth is that we need rest. Our bodies and minds are not meant to go non-stop. Intentional rest must be a part of your self-care routine. This summer, will you join me in embracing rest?
A Restful Summer
My plan is to carve out time to rest by scheduling it. I’m not quite ready to embrace a full summer of rest. But I am ready for a restful summer.
My goal is to have one full day of rest each week this summer.
I also plan on taking one full week in July where I completely unplug and do nothing but hang out with my kids. We’ll do whatever we feel like doing that week.
25 Ways To Embrace Rest For Your Mind, Body, and Soul This Summer
Here’s a list of 25 ways to embrace rest for your mind, body, and soul this summer.
- Be Still
- Leave Your Phone at Home
- Unplug, Totally, for a Day, a Week, or Longer
- Get Lost In a Book
- Work On A Passion Project
- Do a Project With Your Hands
- Walk in Wonder
- Stare at the Clouds
- Gaze at the Stars
- Practice Yoga
- Take a Nap
- Get a Massage
- Get a Facial
- Go on a Rejuvenating Weekend (or longer) Retreat
- Pray and Seek God
- Practice Gratitude
- Sit and Do Nothing
- Make Sand Castles
- Smell Flowers
- Take a Bubble Bath
- Draw or Color
- Sleep In
- Keep the Sabbath
What is your summer plan for embracing rest?
I’d love to hear about it in the comments section below.
With Love and Joy,