There is a lot to be said for the value of work, but many don’t think about the value of rest. Taking a break and doing it well can make you happier, more productive, and healthier.
We should all enjoy what we do. We should be thrilled to go to work everyday and make a difference in the lives of others.
At the same time, taking a break gives us time for reflection. It lets us evaluate if we’re doing the right things and being our best selves. It allows us the opportunity to consider other options and other possibilities.
And it gives us time to connect. Rest is a way to spend time with friends and family. It’s a time to build relationships. It’s a time to shut off the email, put down the phone, and really enjoy the people that mean the most to us.
When we pause to bask in all the wonder that life is, we begin to experience the value of rest.
It seems counterintuitive, but taking time to rest makes us more productive. It makes me think about the failure of short-sighted companies.
Occasionally I’ll hear about a company who cut corners to save a few bucks. You can almost see the scene where some executive brags about how they saved the company thousands of dollars each year by removing this unnecessary safety protocol or that standard procedure. Then someone gets hurt or mistreated by the company and wins a multimillion dollar lawsuit against them. The small savings of cutting corners ended up causing a great deal of harm to an employee or customer and damage to the brand while costing the company millions.
Rest provides life’s safety constraints. Sure we can barrel through life constantly working hard, but we run the risk of burning out, missing important things, and becoming rigid. We need to know when to stop and take time to stop. Rest makes us more prepared, more observant, and more fluid.
Most intense workouts focus on particular muscle groups each day. Why? One reason is to give muscles a chance to rest and recover. For instance, if you work out your biceps one day, you might work out your quads and calves the next.
Even muscles know the value of rest.
Staying healthy and productive throughout the week can be greatly enhanced by taking a day or two off on the weekend to enjoy what you have accomplished. It can be a chance to find relaxation and rejuvenation for your body to be ready to work hard once again.
If you want to be happier, more productive, and healthier, rest. Yes hard work is a necessary component to these as well, but just as too much rest will lead to a life that’s unfit to live, so will too little.
Take time to rest today. Take 5 minutes a day to meditate or day dream. Take 15 minutes to get away from technology and go for a walk or talk with a friend. Get away on the weekends, even if just for a few hours.
Find the value of rest, and enjoy a happier, more productive, and healthier life.