Give Yourself Permission to Rest
For whatever reason, I’ve been feeling particularly tired and fatigued lately. My instinct is to push through. That’s what most of us have learned from our culture. Pull yourself up by your bootstraps, suck it up, fake it til you make it. Even fear of missing out (FOMO) and always looking on the bright side no matter what (toxic positivity) can contribute to feeling the need to ignore our body’s signals.
The body has a natural intelligence though. It is constantly trying to maintain equilibrium. It tells us we need food by making us hungry, that we need hydration by making us thirsty, and makes us tired when we need to sleep.
There’s been more awareness about burnout and what self-care actually means recently due to COVID. I think this is incredibly important for us to keep talking about. Resting physically, mentally, and emotionally is more critical than ever. But how do we do that when there are still the old beliefs about pushing through when we’re worn out and tired?
I think it starts with giving ourselves permission.
Would we tell a child who’s cranky, crying, and tired to suck it up and do more things? Would we tell them they need to “earn” rest? Likely not. Our furry friends (or maybe they’re our furbabies) always lie down and rest when they need to. They don’t need to think about it. They just listen to their bodies and nap.
Although we have developed higher brain function that makes us analyze and develop complicated and sometimes problematic cultural beliefs and norms, our bodies still tell us what we need to know if we take the time to listen. And maybe all that is standing between us and the rest we need is the permission to listen again to the wisdom of our bodies.
What would you do in this moment if you gave yourself permission to breathe and listen to your body? What does your body need right now? What if you allowed yourself just to do exactly that?