There is a wonderful sound that exists on Christmas morning that doesn’t happen on any other day of the year. Waking up on Christmas day, it’s as if there really isn’t a creature stirring, not even a mouse. Unless you have babies, infants or children that is, so then good luck with wanting to have peaceful morning.
The sound I’m talking about is a peaceful sound, a sound that refreshes and relaxes. It’s when the community as whole goes quiet. When everything shuts down and shuts up.
There’s no building or construction work, no lawn mowers, whipper snippers, blower vacs or chain saws within ear shot. No heavy throngs of traffic, no hustle and bustle, shops are closed. You can take in a big sigh of relief. And you can rest…
You know, when you can hear yourself think, demands on you lessen and you can sit, relax and be?
When I was a child, I remember Sundays used to be like this. It was if Sunday, any Sunday in fact, was the societal cue that told us we can have a whole day to rest. Sharing this is not a whimsical nostalgic longing for the past. It’s an acknowledgement of how different our way of life has become.
We have a 24/7 society that has presented us with conveniences like we’ve never known before. While there are many advantages to our new way of life, we’ve forgotten the one basic need we all have. Rest.
Who has time to rest in December?!!
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel as if December days have an inbuilt accelerator in them and the days go faster. Between all the activity and preparations needed for Christmas, it seems ludicrous to be told to rest when all you want is more energy to do everything you want to and more. But guess what? If you allow yourself to rest, you’ll be more energised.
Rest re-energises, re-invigorates and re-centres us
When we are overtired, we’re more prone to injure ourselves or make mistakes. We’re also more likely to become moody or have our feelings hurt because we’re on edge and not able to think things through clearly.
Avoiding these outcomes surely are enough to want to think about investing some time into planning out when and how you can introduce rest periods in the coming days and weeks before Christmas.
6 tips to rest well
1. Stop for a break during your shopping: I know, all you want to do is get everything done, shopping bags into the car and get home. But it doesn’t have to be a long break, just 10 minutes to revitalise. You can stop and have a coffee or something to eat, or even sit in car listening to music before you drive off. You’ll be much more alert when you drive home and be in a better mood too.
2. Turn your smart phone off: I know it’s hard but you do have control of the on/off button! Smart phones are great but they can give the illusion that you’re on ‘call’ all the time. It’s just exhausting, and we’re not designed to be ‘on’ all the time. Nothing is that urgent…and if it is, you’ll find out soon enough.
3. Pamper yourself: Whether it’s a blow wave, getting your nails done, a massage or a long luxurious bath, these types of activities give you space and allows your mind to rest. Not thinking about what and where you have to be gives you a break, and keeps you in the present. If you have a lot on your mind, keep a note pad nearby where you can jot things down that need your attention and can be dealt with later.
4. Stop and smell the sherry: If Christmas celebrations are at your place this year, make sure you have rest breaks while you’re cooking and preparing for your visitors. Whether it’s having a cuppa, lying down, or listening to your favourite music. Standing for long periods of time in the kitchen is tiring. Giving your body a break will reward you by being able to complete all you need to while maintaining consistent energy levels and mood.
5. Take drug free medicine: I’ve come to value rest so much that I liken it to a dose of medicine that keeps me healthy. Find a way to value these time outs so they become as automatic as brushing your teeth or putting your seat belt on. It will then become a preventative measure that cares for you, rather than having to deal with the after effects of exhaustion.
6. Delegate: Do you really ‘have’ to do it all? Is there something that someone else can do for you that will take the pressure off so that you can have more time to rest? Often, we want things done a certain way. Ask yourself how important it is to have something down the ‘perfect’ way or whether getting it done is enough. Sometimes, giving up control is harder that anything else.
There you have it. My tips to make sure that you have a very merry Christmas. A Christmas that re-energises, re-invigorates and re-centres you rather than a cranky, worn out and exhausted one.
So make sure you rest. Rest hard!!