So today I want to talk about the importance of rest and unwinding. But, before I get there, I have a little backstory to tell you! [I didn’t ask permission from Michael to tell this story LOL. So if you’re reading this babe…i love you :)]. ANYWAY. For those of you who don’t know Michael, he is an extremely hard worker. He’s very disciplined, loves to-do lists, and serves me and all of his friends SO well. When Michael is unwinding or not being productive, he occasionally likes to play video games. (It’s nothing crazy excessive by any means – just kind of what he does if he’s done with his to-do list, like waiting for me to finish getting ready to go to dinner lol).
Despite how hard he works though and the fact that he really doesn’t play video games that much…for whatever reason, this is something that’s bugged me since we’ve been married. I get annoyed when he plays video games – even if he’s not neglecting any other responsibilities. Recently when I felt annoyed at this (and knew I shouldn’t be annoyed), I texted my mom and sister (like any normal girl lol) and explained the situation. I asked them ‘can someone please explain to me why this bothers me? there’s literally nothing else he should be doing and yet I feel annoyed’.
My sister Jill responded and said ‘why would that bother you? that’s just what he does to unwind. i binge watch netflix, and it would be so much less enjoyable if Caleb (her husband) made me feel guilty about it’. And then she asked me ‘does he give you a hard time for what you do to unwind?’ And I responded ‘I guess because what I do to unwind seems so much more productive!’ Jill said ‘lauren that’s the whole point of unwinding! you’re not supposed to be productive!’. And it hit me…
I thought and thought and thought of what I do to ‘unwind’ or relax…and literally couldn’t think of anything. Obviously I like to run and workout but I don’t really think that counts as relaxing. Every second of my day has to be productive in SOME form or fashion – whether that’s working, cleaning, working out, working more lol…because that’s how my brain is wired. As much as I LOVE that blogging is my full time job, being a business owner means no one tells you when to stop. So, I don’t.
Even when we’re on vacation laying at the beach…I’m answering e-mails, editing photos, researching stuff on SEO, etc. On a Saturday when Michael is having his ‘unwinding time’, I get annoyed because I feel like we need to be doing something productive. I’ll find something to clean or use it as a chance to get caught up on emails, etc. I don’t say all of this to make you think ‘wow, Lauren is such a hard worker,’ but to explain how off balance things have gotten.
After that texting conversation with my mom and Jill…my mom challenged me to have at least one day a week where I’m not working – not responding to messages or linking new outfits or anything. That was about 3 weeks ago and let me tell y’all, it has been extremely hard for me to create space for rest. But, seeing how hard it was for me to do this made me realize even more how important it is.
So, I’m writing this post right in the middle of this struggle, and definitely have not mastered it. But, I’m writing to y’all because I have become so aware of how important it is to take time to turn off, to unwind, and to truly rest. Our bodies and minds were not made to go go go 24/7. We will get burnt out from work, we will have trouble sleeping, our relationships will suffer, we won’t be happy, and we won’t have peace.
SO. What does ‘unwinding’ or rest really look like? I think it looks different for each person, and there’s no right or wrong answer! (Unless your answer is choosing to keep being productive lol!). It’s anything that helps calm your mind down, or even shut it off! For me, when I’m choosing to unwind…I will read a book and have hot tea, (i always have the hardest time reading fiction books unless I’m on an airplane sans wifi because I feel like it’s ‘not productive’, but I’m trying to change that!), or take beau for a walk around the neighborhood without my phone. Something else I’ve learned relaxes me is taking a bath and reading Women’s Health Magazine (seriously obsessed with this magazine!). Or opening a bottle of wine and cooking dinner with Michael.
So, maybe you’re reading this and thinking ‘she’s crazy, resting is NOT a problem for me.’ But, if this is a struggle you also have…you have to change your mindset about ‘unwinding’. Something I’m learning is that unwinding or relaxing is not being lazy. Choosing to unwind or relax is choosing to allow your body and your mind to rest, recharge, and recover…so that you can be the best wife, co-worker, daughter, sister, friend, you can be!
I’d LOVE to hear about some things you guys do to unwind! I need all the help I can get haha. Thanks for reading!
xo LaurenShop the post: