ideas for rest

Rest for the Weary: Taking a Break When You Need it Most - March 20, 2010

The week is coming to an end, and today I am reminded of the importance of rest. When is the last time you took the time to close down your computer, put all of your obligations on hold and take a day to reconnect with yourself, your family and nature?

If it has been weeks, months,...years?...I dare you to take the time to honor yourself and those around you with a day of simplicity, quiet, nature, reading, conversation, prayer, thought, or whatever helps your soul rest/recover from the daily grind.

I grew up in a family that took each Friday evening & Saturday, or Sabbath as we called it, to be together. The rules were simple - there was to be no television, no chores, no work for a 24 hour period. Regularly my extended family would get together on Friday evenings for an amazing meal together and then on Saturday we would go to church and then enjoy an amazing lunch together. Following lunch we'd hike, bike, swim, sit around for hours talking and laughing.

As a child, I always looked forward to that 24 hour perioed - when I knew I'd have my family together, no matter what occurred during the week. We had each other for support, and there was such a value in knowing that we were there for each other, no matter what had happened during the week. Children need to connect to thier families, no matter how much they rail against it -- especially in this day in age. And although there were many times I wished that I could turn on the TV -- because you know the best cartoons on on Saturday morning!! -- there was something to be said about moments of silence or listening to the beautiful classical music that my mom would play throughout our home.

As I grew older, went to college and  began the rat race called adulthood, I left the idea of a rest day behind. I thought it outdated and prohibitive.

But then a few weeks ago, I returned home and spent a Sabbath with my family. Something in my soul took flight -- that old tingly, fulfilled feeling inside returned and I truly rested. While I'm not a church-goer or "religious" per say -- I'm more of an independent spiritual type -- I have realized that I need to reclaim my day of rest. To run the race of life Monday through Friday, and then on Friday evening reconnect with my soul, my family, friends, creator, nature,... And I have to say, it's a good feeling to realize this without it being dictated or an obligation, but rather an adult realization. This is what I think so many 30ish men and women, like myself, struggle with when it comes to our spiritual walk. We just don't want someone telling us what to do - we'd rather decide through discovery and free-will.

So you may be I thinking that everyone should set up a day of rest like I enjoyed as a child? My answer is, yes, no, maybe, who knows -- really only you know what  your mind, body and soul needs.

I just dare you to take time to think about it, and set aside a day or two in the coming weeks to rest a bit. I especially dare you to experience a 24 hour period with your darn cell phone off -- without splintering your attention from where you are & who you are spending time with while texting, checking the weather forecast, reading your work emails, etc...

Just for a 24 hour bold enough to take a break from it all...

- Jen Engevik, Team Project Be Bold