When I was born, my Mom always likes to remind me, that I was the screaming newborn that they wheeled down the hallway. She laid in bed, after giving birth, praying that the screaming newborn wasn’t me. As the screams became louder and louder…the nurse wheeled me in…”we just can’t get her to settle”.
And so began the journey of me not knowing how to sleep, relax, and rest.
I’m a go-getter. You know that type that can’t say NO. The one who always puts their hand up for more work, more commitments, more tasks. The one that forgets themselves in the midst of saying YES to everything and everyone else before they say YES to themselves?
I know that you know.
And the journey of learning how to say YES to yourself can be a very painful one. I’m always amazed at the people who leave work on time, refuse to work more shifts then they are allocated, how put their foot down and have a dinner break. Those people who have time to exercise and sleep. They always seem so calm. And even though I run around saying YES to everything else..I have lost track of saying YES to me. YES to me putting my foot down, connecting with who I am, and what I want.
There’s a very strong current of guilt that induces this outward YES and hand-raising. If I rest, well then I should be doing x,y,z instead. Right? No time to rest: “You can sleep when you die”…I’ve heard that a lot. This is dangerous. This is what happens when you sit in two different doctor’s office in five days and they both look at you and say “well, if nothing comes back in the blood work, then we may need to talk about anti-depressant medications and anti-anxiety tablets”
What? Have I let myself go to a place where I’ve said so many YESs to everything outside of myself, that my breakdowns in front of them warrant discussions about medication to level out my mood swings, exhaustion and outward appearance.
I thought to myself “maybe I can get something from this”…and then I started writing…pausing the video so I could reflect and write. WRITE, take notes, WRITE, take notes…and skip into the office where Andrew was sitting and say to him “OMG, this video I just watched has totally changed how I viewed rest.”
I viewed rest as ‘sitting on my ass’. Literally. Doing nothing. Vegging out and feeling guilty because the I SHOULD be: doing the dishes, cleaning the floors, weeding, folding laundry, etc. Guilt vegetation.
Rest…well what exactly is it?
Perhaps it’s more about reconnecting with your whole being. Giving yourself space to do whatever it is (sleeping, weeding, cleaning, walking, meditating, yoga, exercise, journalling, praying) that gives you a sense of rejuvenation in your soul. Where you walk away feeling a lot less like you’re going to ‘loose your shit’ and more like ‘i’ve got my shit sorted’.
…then…it hit me.Something that I’ve always known to be true, but never put it together….I’ll let you know about that tomorrow. Until then, watch this video, mull over it.
tell me…do you feel guilty resting?
Do you struggle to rest?
How do you rest?
(I’m NOT negating depression and anxiety at all. it’s real stuff. for me, I know it’s really starts with me saying NO! the anxiety for me is real, its because I’m not sleeping and not taking care of myself. IF, after taking time off and reflecting and these conditions do not ease up, i’ll explore medication.)