The Most Important Daily Supplement… REST!


I can remember the day three years ago I wrote on a post-it the phrase “Let Go of Productivity.”  It was the day I recognized that my priority in life was health and well being, and feeling unproductive did not necessarily need to be negative.  A dose of daily rest can regulate and balance your body’s metabolic processes like digestion, circulation, and hormonal balance.  I hear so often from my community that some yoga is too slow, that you want to move faster and go longer and work harder.  It is important to remember that the body and mind need rest in order for our immune system to fight off pathogens, for our cells to regenerate properly, for our liver to detox the body, and to be able to focus, prioritize, not to mention dozens more reasons why our health depends on a rested body and mind.

This summer, prioritize rest.   During these high summer months daylight is abundant.  This often means we do more than average on a given summer day.  In the high summer, when we align our daily sleep patterns with the daylight hours, we are staying up later than usual.  Also, we have more energy available to us during the summer.  When spending time at the lake, mountain, or beach this summer, we might tend to go all out and forget our daily supplement of rest!  I know this personally.  I just got home from a week-long vacation on Martha’s Vineyard full of fun and activities.  Now that I am home I feel like I need another vacation!  I am reminded that rest is as important as enough sleep during these long summer days.

Ask yourself what you do to “let go of productivity” and take a rest during your busy week?  More importantly, how do you “press the pause button” and rest on a daily basis?  What are you doing to cool down and let the body rest?  Can’t think of anything?  This realization might mean major changes for you and your health.  What might improve if you got more rest?

lets up the wallTake a moment to write down a few words in your journal about your favorite ways of resting.  A few of my favorites are sitting under a tree and listening to the birds, people-watching at a local park, reading, taking a gentle/restorative yoga class, meditation, legs-up-the-wall pose, self-massage, long baths, knitting, drawing, jewelry making, or simply a twenty-minute nap.

List your favorite ways to relax and rest and write about how you would like to build in more restful moments in your daily and weekly routine.

Be as careful about your daily supplement of rest as you are with your Vitamin D and Probiotics!

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