If you ask anyone who knows me, they will tell you I never rest. I find it hard to be still, unless I’m doing something whilst being still. It’s in my genetic makeup to always be moving and doing.
It’s also in my genetic makeup to repair the energetic debts I run up in this frenzy. As a biological system, my body maintains homeostasis - a set point of functioning that it always returns to - as long as I don’t get in its way. Replenishing and repairing from the wear and tear of just being alive is a necessary part of my daily cycle.
It was hard, at first, to push aside the distracting thoughts - the lego pieces haphazardly strewn across the play mat that I wanted to pick up, the toilets needing scrubbing, the lunges I should be doing, that I didn’t want to do. Despite all that, I was diligent in trying to re-centre my mind on the present moment.
And so with some practice, I spent time today actively resting. The boys went out for the morning and I sat down at my laptop, sipping my coffee slowly and getting in a great flow with some research I was doing for Well Made Mama. Flow, another important element, is the state we find ourselves in when we are totally immersed in the task at hand, and loving it. A flow state can happen when we are so absorbed in an activity that we forget all about the world around us. It happens when we are doing something cool, consider it challenging enough to keep our interest, and most importantly, know how to do it well.
It felt good to start something and finish it, and I kept going. The rest of my time alone I tinkered around the house at my own pace. I felt rested and content and I was waiting for my little guys to come home. When they did, we played and built things, I gave them little foot rubs whilst I listened to their stories of the morning they had, and we get lost in the pleasure and process of being in the moment. We all flowed together.
So what have I learned about taking time to rest my overactive brain?
I needed space to myself and I enjoyed it.
I felt ready to give my 100% attention to the people who needed it.
I felt accomplished and inspired by my good work.
How will you experiment with rest this week? Here’s an idea to work with:
A few times today, stop, breathe, and focus on what is happening right in front of you. Let all the other thoughts in your mind float away for a minute. Keep your focus on the here and now.You can try this with your child, relishing the present moment for what it is. In this moment, you are together. No other thought is more important. Push aside any distracting thoughts. Keep bringing your mind on the present moment, on the here and now.